TOWN OF HOLDEN BEACH, NC
Town of Holden Beach
The Family Beach
Hurricane Florence - Mayor Updates
September 20, 2018 - (1:30 p.m.) Whereas, the conditions which called for a State of Emergency have passed; Now Therefore, I, J. Alan Holden, Mayor of the Town of Holden Beach, do proclaim that the State of Emergency for the Town of Holden Beach is now ended and the following measures can be taken: beginning at 1:45 p.m. on the 20th day of September, 2018 Holden Beach shall be open to the public and the roadblock removed.
September 20, 2018 - (11:30 a.m.) An email blast will be sent at or about 1:30 p.m. today after the scheduled 1 p.m. conference with federal, state and county officials concerning current conditions. The intent is to allow unrestrictetd access to the island after review of the information from the 1 p.m. conference.
September 19, 2018 - (9:30 p.m.) Barring any unforeseen issues through the night into the morning, we anticipate an announcement allowing unrestricted access across the bridge midday tomorrow.
September 19, 2018 - (2:00 p.m.) Water, sewer and electricty are working fine islandwide, but conservation is still critical due to other countywide circumstances. All streets are passable. Some areas do not have TV and internet service. Beach strand, dunes, etc. are in good condition. Preliminary inspections are finding exterior damage such as shingles/ siding as the most common damages. A major concern is that homes might outwardly appear to be in good condtion, but upon closer inspection of the interior, may reveal water intrusion. The landfill opens tomorrow, Thursday, September 20th, under normal operating hours and tipping fees. We anticipate Waste Industries picking up normal household trash this Saturday. Do not place storm debris in garbage or recycle receptacles. The Town will not be picking up storm debris. Each property owner must make their own arrangements for debris removal.
September 18, 2018 - (4:20 p.m.) At 5:00 p.m. on September 18th, all colors of 2018 decals properly displayed on windshields will be honored and re-entry allowed.
September 18, 2018 - (2:00 p.m.) Effective 3:30 p.m. on Tuesday, September 18th the Holden Beach Bridge is open to residents and property owners upon presentation of a valid 2018 GREEN re-entry decal properly affixed to their vehicle windshield. Sewer service has been re-established islandwide; albeit marginally in some areas. Water service at the present time is also marginally operational; with its continued availability and quality questionable due to countywide waterline breaks. It is imperative that extreme conservation measures of water consumption be observed in order to reduce the demand on the water and sewer systems. Be aware of miscellaneous storm debris that might contain nails, etc. as you transit the beach.
September 17, 2018 - (8:00 p.m.)
• All Town streets are or will be passable by midmorning tomorrow, Tuesday, September 18th.
September 17th - (2:50 p.m.) Work crews continue to make progress on re-activating the sewer system. Initial sewer services have been successfully established for some areas. Electric services are in working area islandwide. We have been successful in lowering water levels on roadways. We anticipate making a decision about re-entry to the island by nightfall. Overall the beach strand and dunes have held up well. The oceanfront at Holden Beach West has some minor dune and walkway damages. Canals seem to have fared well.
September 17th - Due to the current conditions resulting from Florence and to the need to focus on the safety and restoration of our island and residents, The Holden Beach Board of Commissioners’ Regular Meeting scheduled for September 18, 2018 at 7:00 p.m., Special Meeting scheduled for September 18, 2018 at 10:00 a.m. and Special Meeting scheduled for September 18, 2018 at 3:00 p.m. are all canceled.
September 16th - (8:55 p.m.) Power has been restored to the island!
September 16th - (8:45 p.m.) The Holden Beach Maintenance Department has their pumps deployed. The Tri-Beach Fire Department is lending their support with manpower and equipment as well. The water table has dropped in many places several inches since 12:00 p.m. today. If this continues we should have good news tomorrow morning. Brunswick Electric is working in our mainland area. A lot of progress is reportedly being made increasing our optimism of a more expeditious recovery. The Holden Beach Maintenance Department will be working on the sewer system tomorrow in areas where the water table will allow. Now that the rain seems to have finally slacked off we are cautiously optimistic of being able to make even more progress tomorrow.
September 16th - (2:00 p.m.) The beach strand including fencing and vegetation is in overall good condition. Water is deeper in places than any time previous with a prediction of 5 - 8 more inches of rain in the near future. Ocean Boulevard East is covered from Halstead to the last house at the east end of Holden Beach. Portions of McCray are not covered. Ocean Boulevard West has several deeply covered sections. Holden Beach West has lots of water, especially at the "hill" in the road. The canals seem to be stable at this point, but lots of rainwater is covering the streets. More shingles and siding were lost last night. There is still very limited damage involving potential structural issues. Electrical service is still not available and the return of service is not known. It is expected sometime in the next several days. Sewer service is still not available and no work is taking place. This is because so much of the system is underwater. Rain is pouring down now (1:15 p.m.) as I am preparing this statement. Holden Beach maintenance crews are trying to get pumps in place to lower the ponding of our streets, but so far it is a losing battle. Crews are doing all they can. I know roads to Holden Beach from Supply, Shallotte and US 17 are dangerous and/ or impossible to drive over. Be careful!!
September 15th - (9:29 p.m.) Holden Beach is still under a Tropical Storm Warning. It's still raining, with lighter winds. There are lots of storm issues in the surrounding area. With all of our problems, Holden Beach is still very blessed. Another band of higher gusts and heavier rain just started as I was trying to end this blast. We are now under a flash flood warning. Tomorrow will be better!
September 15th - (8:15 p.m.) The electrical service to Holden Beach will not be available until Monday or Tuesday of next week at the earliest. By law the Town has to provide utilities before providing occupancy. The sewer system is still not operational. Water is still standing on many of our streets and locations on the island. We will send updates as they become available.
September 15th - (2:00 p.m.) This morning has delivered more rain and wind. Brunswick County has now received 20 inches as of 8:00 a.m. today. An additional 15 - 20 inches may fall today according to the 1:00 p.m. conference call with the weather service. The southern wind this morning caused more shingle and siding damage. Down spouts and gutters have suffered as well. Ocean Boulevard has multiple locations with water too deep for cars to drive through. Some places are up to the doors on 4x4 pickup service trucks. This flooding is in sections from the east end to the west end. The sewer repairs have run into problems because some valve pits are underwater. This means it is a losing battle until the rain and flooding allows work to continue. There is still no information regarding electrical service. Nobody knows when the power will be available.Yes! The water tank is full. Water is also available from the County when we can actually use it. There is the assumption that this availability will continue. The 1:00 p.m. conference call quote of the day from the Brunswick County Emergency Services is simple "if you are not here, stay away". While work on the sewer system has halted efforts are being made to try to pump the water off the boulevard in the deepest sections. Meanwhile, rain continues.The canals are about to overflow. This is a continuing threat. Overall, yes the island conditions are worse than early this morning. An update email will follow later today.
9/15/18 - (10:20 a.m.) Further clarification - re-entry time is unknown. We have no power and no sewer, which is required for occupancy.
9/15/18 - (9:20 a.m.) Good News!!! First reports and observations are that the beach strand is in good condition with little damage caused by the ocean to homes. Wind damage is as described in the last blast as mostly shingles and vinyl siding. Sewer crews (Town staff) arrived at the maintenance building early this morning to start getting ready to go on the island when weather permits site work to begin. No news about electricity. BEMC crews are in our area now, but the big question is when power will be available to BEMC!! I am still at the Emergency Operations Center/ Maintenance building next to Food Lion.
9/14/18 - (8:00 p.m.) The power feed from Duke/ Progress Energy to BEMC is not working. This is a major concern and must be repaired before we can even hope to get electrical service available on Holden Beach. A timeframe for the repairs is undetermined. Water to the island at this time seems not to be a problem. The water is still turned off awaiting a request from Holden Beach to Brunswick County requesting the valve to be opened. Sewer operations are still awaiting a break in the weather for the crews to get onto the island. It is hoped they will return by the middle of the day tomorrow however, the heavy rains predicted may cause delays. Then it will take several hours to return to operation, plus time for any repairs. The Building Inspections Department will have to review the total damage before any final decisions can be made regarding re-entry. Damage at this time is still expected to be much, much less than predicted 48 hours ago. We all should be thankful! The next big concern is the midnight high tide tonight. South winds and the surge could bring severe dune and beach strand damage. If we can get passed this high tide we will be on our way to getting through this tough struggle. Many calls, texts, emails, etc. have been received about the web camera being out of service at my office. It will return to service ASAP when repairs are made. Like so many other things Florence interfered with it. I don't expect another update to be sent until midday tomorrow.
9/14/18 - (3:00 p.m.) The wind is still blowing 45 + - MPH and rain is not as heavy as earlier today. The wind has changed in the past 30 minutes from out of the west to now coming out of the south. This wind is directly from the ocean side of the island. The hurricane is obviously moving which will help Holden Beach. Unless there is a major change I do not expect major damage on the island. Siding, shingles, pool fences and other minor repairs will be what most owners will probably find necessary. There will be some exceptions. Ocean wash over the dunes is still possible. Canals are full of water. Streets are covered in low areas. An island review will take place when Florence passes and an update will be given.
9/14/18 - (9:45 a.m.) Holden Beach is experiencing wind estimated at 50 MPH, with bigger gusts. Rain continues to fall and is heavy at times. The power is off in the causeway area and the island. Ocean and waterway levels are up. An update will follow this afternoon.
9/13/18 - Storm impact predictions have given us hope of less damage. I am at the Holden Beach Emergency Operations Center next to Food Lion. Wind speed just increased and the first band of rain just arrived (1:25 pm.). Water and sewer are turned off. Power is still on. Lots of rain is on the way. Winds are expected to be 100 MPH +. Surge is expected to be nine - 13 feet. Things are much better than expected last night.
9/12/18 - Holden Beach has been evacuated and the sewer system turned off. Electricity is currently on, but controlled by BEMC and Duke/ Progress Energy. Water is controlled by Brunswick County during the hurricane. The bridge closed this morning. The bridge will reopen after the hurricane event and the island is inspected and cleared for re-entry. Wind is expected to increase tomorrow morning. Speed could reach 120 MPH during the hurricane if it comes to Holden Beach. Rain can reach 35" - 40". Rain and wind could last three to four days. Storm surge could reach over 13 feet. This is a very, very serious hurricane. It is almost certain that Holden Beach will suffer serious damage unless there is a drastic, unexpected change. The ocean waves have taken the storm, long rolling breaker look. They are not large yet, but are starting to build. An email update will be sent tomorrow as changes take place.
Town Hall will be closed at 5:30 p.m. on Tuesday until further notice.
9/10 at 4:30 p.m. - Mayor Holden has issued an immediate MANDATORY evacuation for non-resident renters and visitors of the Town of Holden Beach. Said parties are to be off the island by 12:00 p.m., Tuesday, September 11, 2018.
An immediate MANDATORY evacuation for EVERYONE in the Town of Holden Beach is declared with said parties to be off the island by Wednesday, September 12, 2018 at 8:00 a.m. The bridge is subject to being closed sooner if winds are sustained at 45 MPH or higher. Please click here to view the proclamation. Remember when a mandatory evacuation is issued, you MUST leave the island. Sewer service will not be provided.
The Town of Holden Beach is now in a State of Emergency. A Voluntary Evacuation Order is in place. Click here to view the order. Please continue to monitor your email and the Town's website for future communications.
Please review the following items as we prepare for the impact of Hurricane Florence.