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Hurricane Matthew - Week Two Highlights
October 22, 2016
Highlights for the Town of Hilton Head Island

by Town Manager, Steve Riley

  • The focus in week two has been on damage assessment, clearing of debris on roads, restarting beach renourishment, emergency permitting, assisting those in need, reaching out to state and federal agencies for assistance, and restoring some sense of normalcy.

  • The President declared a disaster for purposes of providing assistance to individual citizens. Residents should continue to call 843-524-HELP (4357). This number is for those with assistance to offer as well as for those in need of assistance.

  • To see if you qualify for federal assistance, go to Disasterassistance.gov. A FEMA Assistance Center is expected to open on the Island in the coming days.

  • Damage Assessments have been completed on over 9,000 structures. Damaged structures account for less than 18% of the total. Those with at least 50% damage account for just under 2%. Our goal is to complete the damage assessment on all 19,600 structures by October 28th.

  • Town Hall will be open 8:00 am - 6:00 pm Monday-Friday and 8:00 am - 5:00 pm on Saturday and Sunday until further notice for Emergency Permitting and Business Licenses. Enforcement staff is patrolling to address unlicensed contractors, illegal dumping and other health/safety matters.

  • Three Citizen Drop Off sites have been set up and are operating at Chamberlin Drive, Leg-O-Mutton Drive and Coligny Beach Park.

  • Two Debris Management Sites (DMS) have been set up and are operating at Honey Horn and Chaplin Park for the use of the Town's contractor. 2,521 loads of roadside debris have been hauled to the DMS from public roads; representing 114,443 Cubic Yards of debris. Nearly 1,000 leaning or dangerous trees were cleared each day this week. 64 truck crews picking up debris.

  • Meetings were held this week with the FEMA Private Property Debris Removal Team to discuss using Town resources to help clear all private roads on the Island. Additional documentation was provided by each of the major PUDs and submitted to FEMA for review. Additional data on the smaller subdivisions and dirt roads is being assembled by Staff. FEMA made clear that we may not begin to clear debris on private roads until we have received their determination or we will forfeit any federal reimbursement for those clean-up costs.

  • For our storm water system, Staff has inspected: over 25 miles of major drainage channels; 43 of 86 Primary Control structures; 32 priority culverts; and all pump stations. All work is being prioritized and repairs are in progress. Staff is coordinating with the PUDs to inspect /repair their drainage infrastructure as needed.

  • All traffic signals have been inspected and repairs completed or underway.

  • Completed inspections of all fire stations, parks, public facilities and town lands. Repairs prioritized and underway.

  • Parks reopened to date: Coligny, Alder Lane, Compass Rose & Shelter Cove. More to come.

  • Beach renourishment started back up on Wednesday afternoon. Crews are going back over portions of the central Forest Beach area before proceeding northward. The Town hosted numerous state and federal agencies in touring the damaged sections of beach. Survey work is being completed to document pre-and-post-storm conditions. Emergency sand scraping to fill breaches in dunes was completed. In conjunction with CSA, developed conceptual plans and secured proposal for emergency protective measures (dune reconstruction) project at South Beach Lane.

  • Hosted representatives from FEMA, US Army Corps of Engineers, National Hurricane Center, SC DHEC, SC DOT, SC EMD, State and National elected officials and others.

  • Authorized release of funds for emergency advertising to let people know we are open for business. Town assisted the Concours 'd Elegance in securing agreements to get Port Royal Golf Club cleaned up so that the event may take place Nov. 5 & 6 - only 3 weeks after the storm!

  • Fire/Rescue crews waded into the pluff mud with chain saws to help free a shrimp boat.

  • We continue to receive outstanding cooperation from the County, State, the PSDs, and utilities.

  • Our Emergency Management team is taking inventory and restocking; working to stay prepared.

  • While much has been done; much remains. Stay safe. Be patient.

Hurricane Matthew - One Week Later: October 15, 2016