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TIMBER: Florence community prepares for Hurricane Florence

September 13, 2018

Several Florence residents prepare for Hurricane Florence by cutting down trees that could potentially fall, such as this pile of logs on Highland Avenue.

FLORENCE, S.C. – Like many other Florence residents, Greg and Jamie Stuckey are preparing for the coming hurricane. They have experience.

The Stuckeys live in the Jackson Avenue area, which got heavily hit during the 2016 Hurricane Matthew. They have lived through both Hurricane Hugo and Hurricane Matthew. They also lived in Belize for five years without electricity.

Greg said their experiences have helped them know how to prepare for the storm.

For this hurricane, Greg and Jamie said they have prepared with a generator, solar-powered lights, ice, food, extra water and medicines. They said they also have a gas-powered water heater and stove to ensure they can still cook and have hot water in the case of a power outage.

The Stuckeys said they like to stay prepared not only so they can stay safe during the storm but also so they can help others afterward.

“If we do these things, we can help other people and be safe during the storm,” Greg said. “We can get in as soon as we can to serve the community after it’s already happened.”

During Hurricane Matthew, Greg and Jamie cooked hot meals for the community while they were still out of power.

Greg also said they are active in helping the community throughout the year, which helps them stay prepared for hurricanes.

“We are really blessed in that regard,” Greg said. “We are just geared in that way.”

Greg’s and Jamie’s mothers will be staying with them during the storm. Jamie’s mother Carol Robinson just moved to the Myrtle Beach area from West Virginia in July and had to evacuate for the hurricane.

Damon Drive resident Mike Wilson decided to prepare for Hurricane Florence by getting Trees R Us, a local tree-cutting service, to come cut some trees that could potentially fall during the storm.

Wilson said that during Hurricane Matthew, a tree fell on the corner of his neighbor’s house, and to avoid the situation from happening again, he decided to get some of the other trees removed from his property.

“I procrastinated for about two years and waited until now,” Wilson said. “We were lucky to get them to come out, because there’s a lot going on and a lot of other people are trying to do the same things.”

Wilson said he also prepared for the storm by getting water and food.

Colton Cauthen, who lives in Pine Acres, said the biggest part of his hurricane preparation consisted of making sure he had plenty of water and snacks. Cauthen said he tried to get a tree-cutting service to come out because there are many pine trees on his property, but he couldn’t get someone out there.

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