Tyrrell gets reprieve from Florence’s wrath

Published 2:54 pm Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Tyrrell County was spared the hurricane-force winds and record-setting rainfall that Hurricane Florence hurled onto more southern counties on Thursday and Friday, September 13-14.

But then the rivers rose on Saturday, and all low-lying areas bordering the Alligator and Scuppernong filled with the overflow. The excess water quickly covered some Columbia streets and yards and many similarly situated rural areas.

And then the rains came on Sunday, when several brief but strong downpours passed through, even though the flooding had not begun to subside.

Several Columbia streets, particularly in New Town (Howard Street and northward), were barricaded, either by town employees or residents who were trying to prevent careless drivers from creating waves that wash into nearby houses or parked vehicles.

The National Weather Service prediction was rain likely for the Columbia area through Wednesday.

Tyrrell County was under a coastal flood advisory until 5 p.m., Monday.

Sheriff Darryl Liverman announced Friday that he has placed his personnel and equipment on call to aid other sheriffs in areas hard hit by Florence.

His action is in accord with the North Carolina Sheriffs’ Association activating its statewide Disaster Assistance Network. The Network provides needed assistance to sheriffs’ offices within the Hurricane Florence disaster area by sheriffs’ offices that are located outside the disaster area.

In addition to personnel, available equipment on stand-by includes several mobile command centers, armored rescue vehicles, boats, swift water rescue teams, rafts, generators, transport vans, 4×4 vehicles, Humvees, and various other equipment. County jail bed space has been secured by sheriffs outside the disaster area to accommodate jail inmates from any jail within the disaster area, an association spokesman said.

The Tyrrell County Board of Commissioners cancelled their Sept. 13 regular meeting while they are in emergency session on Sept. 11, during which they declared a state of emergency, ordered county evacuation by 8 p.m. Sept. 12, and imposed curfews on Thursday and Friday nights.