It was the most rain some parts of Georgetown County have seen in a single day in decades and it caused major problems for a lot of people.
While the area did pick up more rain Thursday, it was what happened Wednesday that will be remembered for years by those who were caught in the torrential downpours.
According to National Weather Service radar estimates, some areas near Murrells Inlet received more than four inches of rain in a few hours on Wednesday while other areas of the county, especially south of the City of Georgetown, saw more than five inches in the rain gauges.
At the City of Georgetown’s Maryville fire station on South Island Road, 4.7 inches of rain was recorded Wednesday.
For parts of the Waccamaw Neck, it was the most rain in one day since Hurricane Floyd in 1999, according to Ed Piotrowski, meteorologist for WPDE TV 15.
When Thursday’s rainfall was added to what fell Wednesday, the Murrells Inlet area picked up nearly eight inches of rain by mid-afternoon Thursday.
That was before even more rain fell later in the day.
The heavy downpours were to blame for several traffic accidents and lightning was believed to have caused damage to a home in Murrells Inlet.
The strike occurred at about 2 p.m. in front of a home on Cypress Estates Drive and prompted a response from Murrells Inlet - Garden City Fire.
Major damage was reported in the upstairs portion of the home. No one was home when the lightning strike occurred.
There was also a report of lightning striking a house on Inlet Point Drive but no damage was noted when crews arrived at that location.
The flooding forced several restaurants in the Pawleys Island area to close early on Wednesday.
Pastaria 811 restaurant and Habaneros Mexican restaurant closed early due to the flooding.
The Pawleys Island Post Office was also flooded.
Cars were stalled in water up to almost 2 feet deep.
Some left work early to prevent being stranded from the heavy rainfall.
A three-car accident — not weather related — occurred on the southbound lanes of the Waccamaw Bridge Wednesday afternoon. Three people were injured. One had to be cut from a vehicle.
The accident caused a major traffic backup for more than an hour.
With the $14 million drainage project still incomplete in the City of Georgetown, flooding became a problem when a heavy storm cell moved in Wednesday night. Some of the usual flooding places — near Georgetown City Hall, the Highmarket Street-Fraser Street intersection — had to be blocked to traffic until the water receded.
Frustrated with the flooding
For some residents in Murrells Inlet, flooding is something they have had to deal with on their property every time there is a major rain event.
Priscilla Cooper and Gayle Coleman are neighbors in the 400 block of Murrells Inlet Road.
On Wednesday, all they could do is watch as the flood waters creeped closer and closer to their homes.
While their yards were severely flooded, the rain, fortunately, subsided before the water actually made it inside their houses.
Coleman, who has lived at that location for 17 years, said she knows if something is not done soon to correct the drainage problem, one day she will not be as lucky and the water will cause major damage inside her home.
“This happens every time we have a lot of rain, especially when we have a hurricane come close,” she said. “It started getting worse when they built the Food Lion (near her property) and the other development.”
Coleman said the problem is the drainage pipes in the neighborhood are too small. This, she said, causes a county-owned ditch separating her property and Cooper’s yard to overflow in heavy rain.
She said she has complained about the problem to everyone she can think of, including the Georgetown County Water and Sewer District.
“They will not do anything about it,” Coleman said.
Cooper said she is also tired of the flooding.
“They have got to do something or we are going to have major problems,” she said.
By Scott Harper and
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