Hurricanes Rip Through the South

Vaughan Cross, Reporter

One of the most pressing developments of this fall is the devastation brought forth by hurricanes. Hurricane Florence made landfall on September 14th, and proceeded to shatter rainfall records and cause immense flash flooding. In Conway, SC the Waccamaw River surpassed the previous crest record set by Hurricane Matthew in 2016 by an extraordinary four feet. The huge amounts of flooding caused an increase in pollution in the Carolinas as flood waters took over industrial areas, such as coal ash pits and pig manure pits. The flooding poured out into the nearshore ocean, creating huge black swells in the estuaries and bays on the Carolinas’ shores. The hurricane has taken 47 lives in multiple states, and caused over $17 billion in damage.

Seeing the damage and devastation in the Carolinas, Florida prepared for its own superstorm, Hurricane Michael. Hurricane Michael was categorized as a level 4 hurricane, yet was only 2 mph away from being a category 5. The hurricane made landfall on the Florida panhandle on October 11th, and wreaked havoc and billions of dollars in damage. Mexico Beach, a small seaside town, was nearly wiped off the map by Hurricane Michael, and the damage left behind was catastrophic. The death toll has reached 18 people over 4 states, with the most lives lost in Florida.  Unfortunately this death toll is presumed to rise as searches for missing persons are ongoing in the affected areas (in Florida alone there are approximately 2,100 missing). Worse, debris and flood waters have complicated rescue efforts; the hardest hit communities have had to have supplies airdropped as a result. It is also not just a problem of transportation and logistics, but also a problem of manpower as many relief organizations have been spread thin due to the amount of severe storms in a short amount of time.

LQHS students can help the relief efforts of both storms by visiting the link down below, or by even sending supplies in to the Red Cross, Save the Children, Americares, and GlobalGiving.

American Red Cross: https://www.redcross.org/

Save the Children: https://www.savethechildren.org/

Americares: https://www.americares.org/

GlobalGiving: https://www.globalgiving.org/

Hurricane Florence