More than a week after Hurricane Matthew swept across the eastern portion of North Carolina, daily routines are resuming for some while clean-up and recovery efforts are still on the minds of others.
Residents in the Ivanhoe and Garland areas continue to work to clean out homes and businesses that were damaged from flood waters.
Sampson County assistant manager Susan Holder said there are still long-term road conditions the county is facing. As of Monday morning, more than 75 roads in Sampson remained closed due to flooding and washouts. The number of power outages as a result of the storm were minimal, with less than 100 being reported by Duke Energy in the southern end of the county as of Sunday evening. Four County and South River did not issue any outage statements.
Clinton City Schools students returned to classrooms Monday morning, but on a two-hour delay, after being out for a week. While some roads within the city’s district remained closed due to flooding and washouts, officials felt using alternate routes were the best option for getting kids back in school.
According to Faith Jackson, community liaison with Clinton City Schools, the last bus arrived on school property at 10:10 Monday morning, with no significant issues. “Everything went well this morning,” Jackson said.
“We used alternate routes this morning,” Jackson said. “There were not any major problems. In preparing for students to come back to school, we had made arrangements last week for students to meet at alternative locations when buses couldn’t travel roads.”
Officials have announced that students in the city’s system will make up their first day Oct. 31, which was originally a scheduled workday for teachers. Beyond that make-up day, nothing has been decided.
Sampson County Schools, faced with even more road problems than the city system, has been closed to students for six full days, and while officials continue to work to find the best and safest way back to school for their students, a final decision on a return date had still not been reached at press time.
Just as critical as getting students back to school is dealing with water issues caused by Matthew, including a continued water boil advisory for some county residents.
According to a release by Sampson County government officials, while water samples taken have shown an absence of bacteria in some areas, others must continue to boil water before consumption. The notice was given due to line maintenance in certain areas because of Hurricane Matthew.
Those under the advisory are:
District 1 — Bass Lake Road in between Dixie Road and Porter Road and includes Mountaineer Lane;
District 2 — Pearson Road in between Highway 421 and Cartertown Road and Tyndall Grove Road in between Tyndall Town Road and dead end;
District 2 — Mount Moriah Church Road in between Odom Road and Laudie Honeycutt Road, N. Spring Branch Road in between Archie Lee Road and Melissa Drive, Phillips Road in between Autry Mill Road and Charles Newland Road, Wrench Road in between Autry Mill Road and Green Path Road, Grady Road in between Browns Church Road and Hargrove Road, Isaac Weeks Road in between Hungry Farmer Resturant and Wynn Road.
The North Carolina National Guard continues to assist with disaster response efforts, with 1,079 members currently activated. North Carolina National Guard engineers in Cumberland, Moore and Sampson counties have been supporting the North Carolina Department of Transportation with road clearing and hasty repairs.
Individuals, including homeowners, renters, and business owners, in the designated counties who suffered loss or damages due to Hurricane Matthew may register for assistance online at www.DisasterAssistance.gov, by downloading the FEMA mobile app, or by calling 1-800-621-FEMA (3362). For those who use 711 or Video Relay Service (VRS), the number is also 1-800-621-3362. For people using TTY, the number is 1-800-462-7585.
Reach Kristy D. Carter at 910-592-8137, ext. 2588. Follow us on Twitter at @SampsonInd. Like us on Facebook.