Aerial footage shows high tides gobbling up some Georgetown County beaches Tuesday after the coast was lashed by part of Irma Monday.
Georgetown County Emergency Management shared eye-in-the-sky views of high tides rolling through homes that line the coast on its Facebook page.
The tides increased with Irma early in the week, especially on Monday as Irma’s fringes battered the coast.
Jackie Broach, Georgetown County spokeswoman, said the county’s immediate beachfront areas took a beating from Irma Monday, and saw some heavy flooding in places, especially in Pawleys Island and the City of Georgetown’s historic district.
“Those areas are normally pretty flood prone, but we definitely saw levels that were a lot higher than normal for high tide and a full moon,” she said.
Storm surge combined with high tides, creating a cocktail that poured into Front Street restaurants and businesses and also knocked out some beach walkways, she said.
“We lost a couple of beach walkways again that we had just rebuilt from Hurricane Matthew,” Broach said.
Peak wind gusts reached a maximum of 61 mph in the City of Georgetown, while flooded Pawleys Island saw the lowest recorded wind gusts at 40 mph, according to the National Weather Service in Wilmington, N.C.
That data also showed Pawleys Island was swamped with the highest amount of rainfall totals for Georgetown County at 4 inches, while the lowest in the county was in the Sampit area at 1.44 inches.
Those hit hard by the storm were still doing some clean up Wednesday, Broach said. She said most of the county is business as usual though.
“At high tides, we may still see some minor flooding in areas, like the City of Georgetown, that are normally flood prone, but I think for the most part everything is back to normal,” she said.
“We still have some businesses that are cleaning up and repairing some flood damage, mostly along Front Street, but other than that everything is back to normal today.”
Broach said she has heard some residents said they wasted their time in prepping for the more direct slam from Irma, that was once in the forecast, but never came to S.C. waters as Florida ended bearing the brunt of the storm in the U.S.
Broach said she wanted to relay that it’s never a waste of time getting preparations in order, and also reminded the public that we are still in the peak of hurricane season.
“Hurricane season’s not over. You may still need to use those preparations and all those supplies,” she said.
“We’ve never had water just pour out of a building like this,” Pamela Lambert, owner of Castaway’s Bar & Grill at 833 Front St. in Georgetown told The Sun News on Monday. Her business suffered flooding from Irma.
John Kenny’s building, which holds business incubator Georgetown Innovation Center, also saw impacts from the storm on Monday.
“I'm glad we didn't get the real hurricane,” he told The Sun News. “Those poor people in Florida. Can you imagine?”
Chloe Johnson, staff writer, contributed to this report.