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North Carolina: hurricane survival, wind damage, brick home, insurance, power outages.

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Old 04-18-2006, 01:28 PM
 
Location: Snow Hill, NC
787 posts, read 3,321,613 times
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I want to hear from all you newer folks coming to the region what you think about a hurricane now. But just make me this promise. I might, and I say might depending on where it was coming inland at stay home for a Cat. 3 but nothing in this world would make me stay for a Cat 4 or Cat 5. Also if you have breathing problems as I do, when the barometric pressure starts dropping, you will notice you are having more problems breathing. We got Ophelia last year and she was only a Cat 1 and I thought I was going to quit breathing. We had to have the rescue squad out here and I ended up in the doctor's office getting zapped up with medication so I could sleep through the storm.

Just promise me that if you have any doubts about when and if you should evacuate during a hurricane, please ask one of us that have lived through them. We will be happy to tell you what to expect if you haven't been through one. Hurricane season in the Atlantic Ocean starts on June 1st and runs through November 30th although the peak is around September 10th. They are not expecting quite as many storms as we had last year but that could change. Learn where the weather channel is and follow it closely. And you might even want to invest in a weather radio. For assistance in getting together a hurricane kit, let me know or go online and some of the sites that are available by just typing in hurricane survivial kit.
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Old 04-19-2006, 07:54 AM
 
192 posts, read 593,080 times
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Quote:
I might, and I say might depending on where it was coming inland at stay home for a Cat. 3
You might stay for a 3??? Whew, you're brave Bethany!

Like you, I've lived with them my whole life. We prepare well, and are respectfully fearful, but none of us have ever evacated in the path of any hurricane. You know.... the old, stupid natives who won't leave thing... Well, that's changed . Hurricane Isabel, a Category 1, changed my mind forever more. It was different than any other hurricane I've ever experienced--much more intense. I can't comprehend it was just a 1. We had a lot of imbedded tornados & got a direct hit from the upper, right quadrant--the eye never passed over us. It was so, so, so bad. I was hysterically scared by what we experienced. Our home was ok. But, if I had a magic rewind & could go back & choose... to ride Izzy out,or leave, knowing our home would be fine in the end...you couldn't force me to stay & I'd be burning rubber out of town. The experience of her was that terrifying. The aftermath was pretty awful too---we went 3 weeks with no water & electricity. We were well prepared...but not for that long. I've got to move on from talking about this....still upsets me to no end.

I've read some of your other posts about how the hurricanes have changed....they're more intense. I totally agree with you. I'm very, very scared about the years to come. Take care!
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Old 04-19-2006, 08:57 AM
 
Location: Snow Hill, NC
787 posts, read 3,321,613 times
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I don't live directly on the coast either. I am at least 50 miles inland from the Pamlico Sound region and another 100 miles inland from Wilmington and Morehead City. We stayed during Fran of 1996 and she was either a strong 2 or a weak 3. We lost the fence, the shingles off the roof and some other wind damage. But you have to consider the wind field. If the eye passes to the west of the Outer Banks for instant, by the time we get what we are going to get, it is weaker than on the point of impact. Like I said, it depends on where it moves in at and what direction the wind field is in relationship to the county we are in. We are 5 counties inland from the coast to Morehead City. I remember Hazel that struck in 1954 and I was only 3. This was a cat. 4 according to the hurricane history of the state. I didn't have a choice then since I had to stay where my parents where. But you can bet after Hazel, we never stayed for anything else. When Carol, Connie and Diane hit afterwards, we were in Burlington. But after last year, I will have to rethink my priorities. The barometric pressure dropped so low during Ophelia last year, that I had breathing problems. So I probably won't be able to stay if we get anything at all. What I probably will do is go to the family retreat house in Franklin county and hope to God that is far enough. I also have a daughter in Raleigh and some friends in Hickory.
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Old 04-19-2006, 01:56 PM
 
192 posts, read 593,080 times
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I don't live directly on the coast either. I am at least 50 miles inland from the Pamlico Sound region and another 100 miles inland from Wilmington and Morehead City.
Ahhh! Guess that does make quite a difference.

It's been a different animal for me. Except Greenville & Raleigh, I've lived coastal water front vs coastal inland like you. I grew up on the Pamlico Sound (house was 5 miles inland), lived in Wilmington (house was 7 miles inland) a while after college & now I'm on the Albemarle Sound (house 5 miles inland).

This makes me think about the one in Wilmington, I forget the name. It direct hit Wilmington & stalled on it, then bounced back out slightly, then came in all over again....Jeez! We were there then. It lasted sooo long.

Isabel blew the bricks off several brick homes here...whole sides of the houses...I had never seen that happen. Some of the people in town, living literally on the water, had garages & out buildings completely washed out into the sound, without a trace. Edenton had never had water come in like that. It took us hours to make our way to downtown (5 miles) to check on some of our family...my husband & I couldn't keep from weeping, as we rode in the truck & saw the destruction, immediately after it passed. It looked like a bomb had gone off. It was definately not just the usual stuff.

I'll never forget riding in, & walking in, & seeing the shell shocked looks on the faces of those who were literally, just wandering around in their yards, in shock. Sitting in front, just bawling like helpless children. As you walked past, it was surreally silent. It was too shocking for anyone to find the words...otherwise, you could here weeping all around. I've never seen anything like I saw with Isabel, in person.

Hyde was just desecrated by the flooding with Isabel...had never, ever come so far inland & it came very quickly. Edenton was really bad, but Hyde was worse. It flooded into the SECOND floors of many homes. They rescued each other, during the storm mind you, by boat, from the roofs & 2nd story windows. They said it literally happened in 15-20 minutes. Can you imagine?
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Old 04-19-2006, 01:57 PM
 
192 posts, read 593,080 times
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One family in Hyde that I know recounted this....they lived in an area that had never seen any flood water, in over 100 years. They felt safe from flooding. During the storm, they watched the water approaching & kept thinking it would stop. As it began to white cap, on the lawn, they knew it wasn't going to stop. They began to madly & frantically carried all they could, to the 2nd floor. In 5 minutes, water breached her thresholds & came streaming in the house. By 20 minutes total, the downstairs was 3-4' deep in water & rising. It all happened so fast. They were in shock. Suddenly, they remembered her elderly father, who was a little over a mile away, but closer to the water. They swam to their jon boat & went for him. Just in time, they plucked him from his 2nd floor window, with the storm raging around them. They, and many others, continued to boat around, during the storm, to save others from drowning. So many in Hyde lost absolutely everything they owned.

Lots of people, even those in NC, just don't ever "see" the damage in very, very isolated, waterfront areas like Hyde until long after the storm. The news cameras cannot get in to film it. By the time they do, the water's receded a great deal & days, or weeks have passed. FEMA & Red Cross have to station *inside* Hyde before the storm, in order to respond afterwards...They simply cannot get in afterwards, like they typically do elsewhere.

During Isabel, they were in place before the storm, in Hyde. But, poor Edenton...well, nobody ever expected the damage we'd get. It was 3 days before anyone came in. We had to chain saw our own way, out of our roads, to travel to town. There was no help there when we arrived. Some private individuals, with an 18 wheeler loaded with generators, arrived on day 3. --entire load was sold in 15 minutes...prices went up by the minute! Two local businesses, Rose's & Winn Dixie, sent sent the only initial help (maybe 1 or 2 18 wheelers a day) with water & ice--again we'd wait in lines for hours & hours & hours in case they showed.. & the single load would be gone in 15 minutes. FEMA & Red Cross, well they finally showed up & started the military meal pacs, ice & water we were at least 3-4 days in then if not more really. There was not enough to go around. It was dire straits around here. We banded together & shared what we had. We did stuff like....neighbors distributed pool water amongst each other for miles, simply so we could flush toilets. When the pool ran dry, my husband & cousin, dug up an old well (took 2 days) & we roped down buckets for water ...you'll do things like that when you don't have a working toilet. We bathed very little for 3 weeks. We rationed our food & grilled/ate together. The grocery stores opened for limited hours, after several days, with no power. There are only 2 here. They were cleaned out immediately. Those that had generators helped their neighbors as much as they possibly could. Yes, I've done that for a few days before, but never 3 weeks. I had preparations for a week & we ran out. It was so bad.
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Old 04-19-2006, 02:11 PM
 
Location: Mebane, NC
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How far inland is far enough? I figured that Alamance Cty. was far enough in unless something really freaky happened.
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Old 04-19-2006, 02:27 PM
 
Location: Snow Hill, NC
787 posts, read 3,321,613 times
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Steve, you are not gonna like what I am about to say. If you had asked me this say 10 years ago, I would have said go to Raleigh and ride it out. But when Florida was hit by Jeanne, Charley, Ivan I believe it was and some of the other storms of the past two years, for some unknown reason, instead of the thing affected the normal coastal area, the storms went into places that were not accustomed to hurricane weather. And the results were horrible. Someone posted a picture some posts back were Asheville, which is a good 4 hour drive from where I am, received flooding damage. We didn't get enough of either of these storms to be concerned about it. I would say to you, when hurricane season starts which is June 1st, start watching the Weather Channel at 50 minutes after the hour or like 1:50 and take particular heed to the tropical update. They are excellent in their reporting. For the most Alamance should be okay but I am not going to sit here and lull you into a sense of false security. Your best bet when you get down here is the locals. Watch and follow their lead. If they are nervous, you should get nervous. And if you still are having problems trying to figure it all out, you can email me and I have been watching these changing weather patterns for some time. The reason I do this is because my foster/God daughter Brianna, who is nearly 12 now wants to be a meterologist when she gets out of high school. And I do it to help her. And I have lived in North Carolina my entire life so I have been through quite a number of storms. Where you will be, the rain from what will probably be a weak tropical storm or depression by the time it gets to you. Watch out for flooding and possible tornadoes if the storm was extremely strong at landfall say in Florida, Alabama or so. If you have any more questions, don't hesitate to ask me. I really want your North Carolina experience to be a good one.
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Old 04-19-2006, 02:39 PM
 
192 posts, read 593,080 times
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Some of the others may be able to help you better than I, Steve, as obviously I'm "on the coast" literally. I did live in Raleigh & have family in Siler City (hour west of Raleigh). Wake County (Raleigh) is about 4 hours inland from Hyde County, on the Pamlico Sound. Here are few inland affecting hurricanes that spring to my mind...



Hurricane Floyd in 1999...brought flooding in as close as the eastern outskirts of Raleigh. That was pretty unbelievable. We were there then. Tarboro, Rocky Mount, Greenville & many others were all very flooded. Boats in the streets flooded. Princeville, NC...outside Tarboro was horrifically flooded & made national news for weeks.

Another Hurricane...sorry I forgot which one...brought some severe wind/imbedded tornado/hurricane damage to Raleigh areas, some years back. It affected my relatives in Siler City too. Seems like that was right before I moved to Raleigh. Probably 8-10 years ago, I'm guessing.

Hurricane Hugo came up the SC coast & then ran through Charlotte, with significant damage. That might have been the same one as the last paragraph about Raleigh? I just can't remember if Hugo hit both, or I'm actually confusing two storms.

Maybe some longtime "more inland" NC natives can chime in & help you better than I.
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Old 04-19-2006, 02:48 PM
 
192 posts, read 593,080 times
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I just thought about something else...

I'm really out of my element with the areas further west than the Piedmont region, so perhaps someone can verify, or correct this info...

I think sometimes the mountain regions of NC get a massive amount of rain with these hurricanes & it caused mudslides, flooding there with lives lost & really ugly damage. I'm pretty sure I'm correct, but maybe someone more informed can chime in...
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Old 04-19-2006, 02:55 PM
 
Location: Snow Hill, NC
787 posts, read 3,321,613 times
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Well, I was in the hospital when Hugo was suppose to hit in 1989 I believe it was. And it went to Charleston, SC instead of Wilmington, NC were they were expecting it to go. But Floyd of 1999 by far was the worse one we had even though Fran was technically stronger. Floyd flooded everything in sight. We even had President Clinton in Tarboro to come down and assess the damage. How he got in there is beyond me. I couldn't get to Tarboro if I had wanted to. While we didn't actually flood personally, more than 3/4 of the county lost everything they had. In Princeville, they had caskets literally floated out of the ground. In some cases they had to open the casket and identify the person by the burial clothes. It was horrible. I can remember driving to the stoplight on Hwy 58 N and putting my husband out and him walking about 100 feet and getting into a rowboat and going to work that way. We were within a mile of the start of the flooding. Like I said we were lucky. All we lost was a piece of siding off the side of the gameroom. Fran in 1996 was the worse wind maker. I can remember watching this neighbor of ours opening the door which had to be a feat within itself trying to see if his newly planted dogwood tree was still standing. Mind you this is while we were putting pots and pans in the attic to catch the leaking roof and watching piece by piece of the privacy fence we had flying by. Needless to say, we have never replaced the fence because the insurance won't cover it and we know it is just a matter of time before we have another Fran and it will take it out again. Raleigh was hit hard too by both these storms. Dennis, the one of 1999, came close to the coast, went out towards Bermuda and then turned around and got us again. With that one preceding Floyd by two weeks, the ground was so wet, Floyd just finished what Dennis started. Bonnie of 1998 wasn't that bad. Isabelle affected the direct coast like he stated worse than the more inland areas. They said she even changed the shape of the coastline by cutting in another inlet. I said they should name it Isabelle Inlet. Bertha of 1996 in itself wasn't that bad until Fran came along 6 weeks later and did basically the same things that Dennis and Floyd did. Fran was a Cat. 3 I believe at the coast. I don't even believe Dennis was anything but a tropical storm when it roared in here on August 30, 1999 for the second time. Pinetops in Edgecombe County had people trapped in an attic that had to be rescued by helicopter I believe it was. And then of course we were without power for a while. Since I am in the city limits and we weren't flooded, we had power back within 2 days. But others were not that lucky. The longest for Floyd was about a month.
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