RALEIGH – Floodwaters are still at record levels across much of eastern North Carolina. One of the hardest hit areas is Robeson County and the town of Lumberton. Governor Pat McCrory visited the area on Wednesday to survey the damage and assess needs.
“The effects of Hurricane Matthew have been devastating to Robeson County, but we are seeing great strength and resilience from the community, and we are committed to helping ensure the area’s recovery,” said Governor McCrory. “Recovery will not happen quickly, but our top priority will continue to be helping people in the hardest hit areas, like Lumberton and Robeson County, who are enduring the very worst of hardships in the aftermath of this historic flooding.”
Significant resources have been deployed to Robeson County:
Eight senior state emergency management staff are working alongside county emergency operations personnel to ensure critical resources get to those in need.
Law officers from across the state are providing law enforcement assistance coordinated by the North Carolina Sheriff’s Association.
More than 150 American Red Cross volunteers are staffing shelters and providing mobile feeding.
A North Carolina Baptist disaster relief kitchen is operating in Lumberton and is staffed by more than 80 volunteers who prepared nearly 11,000 meals yesterday.
An ambulance strike team from Wake County is on site to support Emergency Medical Services (EMS) operations.
Supplies of food, water, cots and blankets.
State and Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) personnel are working directly with local organizations to provide temporary housing solutions.
Robeson Community College paramedic students are assisting the shelter in Robeson, demonstrating the pride and strength of their community.
North Carolina Forest Service and North Carolina National Guard are providing logistics and security support across the county.
Since the state received approval of the disaster declaration on Monday, the federal government has dispersed $12.4 million to disaster survivors in the designated counties through the Individual Assistance Program. Robeson County, along with Lenoir, Columbus, Edgecombe, Hoke and Cumberland counties has been approved for Transitional Sheltering Assistance. FEMA will continue to register individuals for this program and will move them from shelters to temporary housing, when available.
Total statewide power outages are down to fewer than 3,200 from a peak of 800,000, thanks to help from local and out-of-state utility companies. The majority that remain are in Robeson County.
Sections of I-95 between Lumberton and Fayetteville remain closed due to flooding. North Carolina Department of Transportation crews are working with engineers and North Carolina Emergency Management crews to reopen the impacted portions of the interstate. Safety inspections must be conducted when water recedes to ensure the road is safe for travel.
Floodwaters in Robeson County are expected to begin receding by mid-week. The Lumber River is receding throughout Robeson County, but is not expected to drop below major flood stage until Monday afternoon, at the earliest.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture has approved North Carolina’s request for a hot meal waiver in all 100 counties, allowing Food and Nutrition Services recipients to purchase hot meals prepared for immediate consumption from authorized Electronic Benefits Transfer retailers.
The North Carolina Relief Fund for Hurricane Matthew has been set up for people who want to support long-term recovery efforts. The fund works in partnership with the United Way of North Carolina. Monetary contributions to the North Carolina Disaster Relief Fund for Hurricane Matthew can be made by texting NCRECOVERS to 30306 or by visiting NCDisasterRelief.org. This is one of the best ways to help fund long-term recovery efforts. Additionally, information regarding monetary donations to recognize North Carolina relief organizations can be found at NCVoad.org, a fast, flexible and effective method of assisting those who are in need.
Dial 2-1-1 to speak with a trained call specialist about questions you have regarding Hurricane Matthew; the service is free, confidential and available in any language. Call 5-1-1 for the latest road conditions or check the ReadyNC mobile app, which also has real-time shelter and evacuation information. For updates on Hurricane Matthew impacts and relief efforts, go to ReadyNC.org or follow NC Emergency Management on Twitter and Facebook.