COLUMBUS COUNTY, NC (WECT) - Columbus County authorities are cautioning residents who are returning to flooded areas to begin cleanup efforts.
"It is important to stay vigilant against all the hazards that we'll be facing that are associated with flooding, wind damage, and mosquitoes," said State Health Director Elizabeth Tilson. "While cleaning up outdoors, be sure you are up-to-date on your tetanus vaccine and avoid contact with floodwaters if you can."
The following precautions are recommended:
- Do not use gas-powered generators and outdoor grills or camp stoves in enclosed areas because of the threat of carbon monoxide poisoning.
- Be careful touching electrical equipment if you have remaining floodwaters.
- Throw away food that may have contacted flood or storm water and any perishable foods that have not been refrigerated properly.
- Eating or drinking anything contaminated by flood water can cause diarrheal diseases, such as E. Coli or Salmonella infection.
- Do not drive or walk through flood water.
- If you come in contact with flood water, be sure to wash your hands properly.
- Wash toys and food preparation surfaces that have been in contact with flood water with a bleach solution and allow to air dry.
- If you have well water, be sure to contact a well water professional to have your well decontaminated.
- Wear long sleeve shirts and long pants while outside to minimize mosquito bites.
- Use mosquito repellent that contains DEET or an equivalent when outside and use caution when applying to children.
Columbus County authorities are also encouraging residents to visit one of seven recycling centers to dispose of waste.
The following items are accepted:
- Aluminum cans
- Brown goods
- Bulk waste
- Lead acid batteries
- Mixed recyclables
- Newspaper & inserts
- Poison, herbicide, & pesticide containers
- Scrap metals
- Used motor oil
- White goods (appliances)
- Yard waste
The following items are NOT accepted:
- All liquids except motor oil
- Burn barrels & ashes
- Construction & debris
- Dead animals
- Hazardous materials
- Household solid waste
- Land clearing inert debris/stumps/trees
- Poisons, herbicides, or pesticides
- Radioactive waste
- Unknown products
No commercial or industrial waste materials are allowed at any of the facilities. These items must be taken to the Columbus County Transfer Station. For additional, click here.