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‘It’s really just crazy. It’s overwhelming’: Residents reeling in wake of Florence

Updated: Sep. 17, 2018 at 4:48 PM EDT
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BOILING SPRING LAKES, NC (WECT) - Residents in Boiling Spring Lakes feel scared and isolated after historic rainfall from Hurricane Florence decimated the tiny city in Brunswick County, leaving many trapped in their homes.

Torrential rain from the storm crumbled at least five roadways, destroyed accompanying infrastructure and created massive sinkholes leaving many thoroughfares around the city completely impassable.

"Crazy, crazy. We've been through storms but I've never seen it being devastated like this," explained resident Diane Griffey. "Never seen roads just flood out, break out, the dam gave. Residents that live in the back can't even get out. It's really just crazy. It's overwhelming."

Officials say crews are close to repairing Drayton Road so people can get in and out of Boiling Spring Lakes.

Brunswick County Sheriff's Office crews are out using high-water rescue vehicles to try and reach residents who want to evacuate to area shelters.

"The instructions and orders to shelter in place was because we had teams in to go and try to get them out. We didn't want them to take on the water on their own and get in any danger," said Lyle Johnson, deputy director of Emergency Management Services with Brunswick County.

"Most of our units are back there in the flooded out areas, inaccessible areas. We've got high clearance vehicles right now getting those that want to come out out. And getting them to the shelters we have set up here in town South Brunswick, West Brunswick, North Brunswick."

Those who are able and have large vehicles can drive to the city fire department to be picked up and taken to a county shelter. Evacuees can bring pets but are asked to take cages or carriers with them, if possible.

With food and water scarce, no power and limited cell service, residents in Boil Spring Lakes are desperate for aid.

"Coming up this way it blows your mind because we're such a small little town, a little community that hopefully we'll all pull together but it's scary," said Griffey. "They're saying maybe two weeks before we even have power and electricity. Everybody's getting low on food, gas"

Authorities say they've requested to have food and water delivered but are unsure when that will happen.

"It will come," Johnson explained. "I don't know have an estimated time of arrival on it but they're working on that and that's a priority right now to get those services here to us."

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