Hurricane Matthew Update

As you all know, Daufuskie was hit hard by Hurricane Matthew. Please note the following updates:

I received the following messages and was asked to pass them along. The first is from Aaron Crosby, regarding the Daufuskie Disaster Fund. The second is from the Daufuskie Island Conservancy.

Though I generally send email blasts out only on Thursday evenings, during the post-hurricane recovery process, I will be sending them more frequently as I receive requests.

Daufuskie Disaster Fund

Immediate Needs – digging out from the rubble, persevering until the power comes back on:

  • Equipment & Supplies
  • Generators
  • Chain saws
  • Bug spray
  • Fuel
  • Food & Water

Debris clearing efforts

Near Term Needs – trying to get back to regular life, dealing with a very different economic outlook

Property repairs
Basic needs assistance for those who lost jobs

Longer Term Needs – being better prepared for the next time

Community disaster preparation facility

We are in this Immediate needs stage.  We have done the following:

Giving everyone on the island who needs it 5 gallons of gas per trip to Freeport so that they can keep generators running (we are paying full price, nearly $5 per gallon at the moment, but are working with others to get gas in bulk over here at cost or better)

We delivered 6 generators to various locations on island yesterday

Purchased a pallet of charcoal that will reach the Island today and be distributed

Buying food for the community dinner that is being served nightly at Lucy Bell’s café (corner of Benjie’s Point Road and School Road)

Secured chain saws (purchased – some have been delivered, some not yet)

We are also working with Dave Hutton (one of Chris Hutton’s sons) of Hutton Brothers to put together a proper invoice that reflects the man hours, equipment hours and fuel that went into getting the roads cleared.  Our hope is that the County will agree to pay that.  However, if the County does not, we will cover some amount of that bill to ensure they get something for their effort.  (We realize that they didn’t do the clearing to make a profit, but they put wear and tear on valuable equipment, tore themselves away from dealing with personal concerns, and the entire community benefitted from their efforts – I can’t overstate how indebted the entire Island is to them).

As you can tell from the outlined approach above, we are in the early stages of a long-term plan.  At present, while parts of Haig Point have power back on (you may recall that the Island has two power supplies coming from the mainland, one overhead that comes in at Governor’s Point and one underwater that comes up at Cedar Cove next to Haig Point.  Since all of Haig Point’s electrical distribution is underground, most of their property is fed through the portion of the total electrical system that was undamaged), they don’t have a functioning sewer system.  The rest of the Island will be without power likely until the end of October even though a crew of 30 men is supposed to arrive on the Island today.

There are many people here who haven’t yet fully understood what this storm has done to them, but will get closer to understanding with each day that passes without power being turned back on.  That gives me time to go around to everyone to see how they are doing, and get a handle on what they will need.  Which is good, since I am new at disaster relief.

My pledge (as well as that of Tony Chase, who is a board member of the DICF and is working side-by-side with me to do this relief effort) is one of complete transparency and accountability.  Milton Deitch is the treasurer of the DICF, and I am not yet a signatory on the checkbook.  One of the things that we set in motion on Tuesday was getting a bank card for the DICF (storm hit on a weekend, and Monday was a bank holiday), so until that arrives, Tony is paying for most of what has been received, getting receipts, and will be reimbursed.  I am using the church’s bank card to cover things like the gas and charcoal.  So, simply because we were ill prepared to provide disaster relief, we will need to do some “catching up” with the accounting, but it will all be documented so that everyone can see it and know how it was handled.

I hope this addresses your questions and gives you a clearer picture of what we are doing.

From the Daufuskie Island Conservancy:

The following program has been cancelled and will be re-scheduled for another time after the island recovers.

“Cultivating A Carolina Yard”

Wednesday October 19, 2016 at 2:00 PM

Sent by Ginny Teerlink of the  Daufuskie Fire Department:

Commissioners, Volunteer Firefighters, Hurricane Committee Members and Others… I just received a phone call from Chief Boys. He asked that I send you this email to advise that he, Richard Inglis, EMS and Sheriffs drove to the HP Welcome Center and are preparing to go to Daufuskie Island where they will clear Haig Point Road thru HP and proceed to the fire station to set it up as our Emergency Operations Center. He said that Greg Hutton was already clearing some roads on DI. He stated that there are a great number of trees down in the Welcome Center parking area and that they were using chain saws to cut their way thru to the HP dock. He said that he saw extensive damage as he drove from the Hargray Building at the USC campus in New River to the Welcome Center. Chief Boys wants everyone to know that no one will be able to cross the bridge onto Hilton Head without special County-issued passes. These passes have been issued to emergency operations personnel only. Please feel free to let any others know of this status. I am in NC using a friend’s Apple computer which is totally different for me from my Windows and does not allow me to access my address book. Ginny Teerlink

From the Daufuskie Island Front Porch:

Those of you that own property or are DI residents can view regular updates on the status of the island on the Daufuskie page of next-door.com. Participation on the site requires that you have a verifiable address on Daufuskie. Facebook has also been a great tool in keeping islanders updated.

If you are looking for a way to help, a 501c3 disaster relief fund has been set up on Gofundme.com. Once you have accessed the site go to the Daufuskie Disaster Fund page. I do not include photos or links in these email blasts as they generally increase the likelihood that the emails are sent to recipient’s spam files.

Fire Chief Eddie Boys contacted me and asked that I relay the following information.

The Daufuskie Island Fire Department is up and operational. There are currently 7 firefighters, 2 paramedics, 2 national guardsmen and 1 DNR representative on Daufuskie. They are working with a backhoe and chainsaws to clear the island.

There is potable water available at the fire house. You will need to bring your own container for filling. They also have non-potable water on the firetrucks that can be used for toilets etc. Again, bring your own container.

If you have a TRUE emergency post your name, phone number and address on the Daufuskie page of next-door.com and the fire dept will contact you or get to your house. Please note that this does not mean clearing driveways or checking on house conditions.

The Beaufort County Operations Center has not determined when they will be allowing residents to return. The Chief relayed that it could easily be two weeks or more before islanders are allowed to return to Daufuskie. There are power lines down everywhere, with 6 poles snapped in half and more than 20 downed trees on those lines. All of this will have to be cleaned up before power can begin to be restored. He advised that evacuees should be aware of this in terms of sheltering plans.

I am not on the island but am relaying all the information I have as I receive it. If you have an immediate concern you can contact me on my cell at 630-258-1709. I will do my best to answer your questions if I am able or contact the appropriate person.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Time limit is exhausted. Please reload CAPTCHA.