From chainsaws to fire ants, Pender County urges caution while cleaning up after the storm

From chainsaws to fire ants, Pender County urges caution while cleaning up after the storm
Pender County is urging residents to use caution when cleaning up after the storm. (Source: Charlotte County Sheriff's Office)

PENDER COUNTY, N.C. (WECT) - Hurricane Isaias has come and gone from the region but its impacts will be felt for days to come as recovery efforts begin. Downed power lines, tree limbs, and more will leave residents likely undertaking some sort of cleanup efforts on their properties, and Pender County is urging residents to use caution.

“This is the time when we receive the most emergency calls,” said Woody Sullivan, Pender EMS & Fire Chief. “We respond to chainsaw accidents, carbon monoxide poisonings from generators, and anaphylactic shock from bee stings and fire ants.”

When working to clear debris using chainsaws, Carson Smith, Pender County Emergency Director recommends wearing protective clothing, gloves, and safety goggles. With power outages abundant many will turn to generators to provide power for their homes, but running a generator inside can be deadly due to carbon monoxide poisoning.

While not as commonly thought of after a hurricane, fire ants and bees also pose a threat to people when working in previously flooded areas.

“Fire ants are a hazard after flooding. The ants form a mound to protect the queen. The ant mounds float on the water. Fire ants bite, causing a fierce reaction or anaphylactic shock. Bees too are stirred by storms and flooding,” according to the county.

Copyright 2020 WECT. All rights reserved.