As of this afternoon it looks like we are past the “emergency phase” of our hurricane recovery. The over washes have been stopped by our contractors night and day efforts to build enough dune in the low areas of Springs street for us to feel comfortable we will not have a total breach, and probably not another dune breach. The King tides are also subsiding and the Myrtle Avenue street flooding is nearly over for this month. However, there will be King tides again November 13 through 18, at about the same times of the mornings as the October tides, and about at the same height!Our Contractor, Goodson Construction,  is making good progress on building dunes on the south end of the island below Hazard Street. By Saturday there should be dunes along that entire beach front, but they will be strengthened and sloped before we begin moving north of Hazard. The plan is to recreate the same dune plan that the Town accomplished after Joaquin. Our beach engineers believe that the presence of the dunes we built in March reduced the possible damages to structures as well as the remaining dunes. So that was a worthwhile effort. We received the necessary Corps of Engineers permits for the area above Hazard Street to the north end this morning. The Corps and DHEC/OCRM are cooperating wonderfully with the Town, recognizing the extent of the emergency, and the possible damages to our Town and our property owners! Congressman Rice sent his representative to Pawleys and he spent the day viewing the extent of the damages (which surprised him), and working with us on communications with FEMA and the Corps of Engineers.

The Towns Insurance Carrier will not allow us to indemnify our road and beach contractor for working under houses to move the beach that is under most of the houses on Spring Street. Those owners will have to hire their own contractors. We have provided access to all houses on Springs from the street. Thanks for not moving that sand until we got dunes up on the beach, as that stopped the high tides from breaching in several areas. If your contractors can move the sand to the beach in front of your house, and against the new dune, that would be a help. If not, please pile it in one place near, but not on, the street and our contractor will use it to help with the general dune building.

The Contractors with SCDOT are supposed to begin picking up roadside debris this week in Georgetown County, starting with vegetative material, which must be separated to be picked up (see the first update for more information). This material will be mulched, and anything other than vegetation in a pile will just slow everything up! Please don’t pile debris on the streets as that is a safety issue.

Our Contractors will be collecting beach debris from the beach starting next week.  Any lumber or building materials loose on the beach, or loose and propped up on a dune scarp, will be picked up and disposed of. Any materials or debris on a dune and off of the beach face will not be picked up. Any part of a boardwalk or steps damaged, but still attached or leaning on the boardwalk will not be removed. Any part of a boardwalk which damaged, but in one piece and detached from the rest of the boardwalk, will not be removed.

It is probably not realistic to think that we will be able to renovate and return to the “historic” Town Hall. It had 3½ feet of water in it and was “trashed.” Fortunately we followed our protocol and moved all critical documents from Town Hall to a U-Haul trailer, which we put in a school district maintenance shed.  Since Tuesday after the storm the Town Hall has been in a small construction trailer located on the Pawleys Park, with a port-a-let across the street, and without phone or internet service or space to move documents where they can be accessed. We have now been promised Internet access and phone service by this weekend. A temporary Town Hall is at the top of our priority list while deliberative decisions are being made about a permanent Town Hall.

Because of all the above, the Town Council has cancelled the Turtle Strut race scheduled for November 12, 2016.



Mathew totally over washed the south third of the island, moving 2 to 4 feet of sand to the road making it impassable. It also caused 3 to 4 feet of water over the roads and under any houses close to the creek, flooding anything under those houses. Town Hall was flooded and is unusable. We have set up a temporary Town office but have had to depend on the National Guard for internet service, and our town hall telephones are still down.  We had the National Guard and our own contractors begin clearing Springs Street, and the island was shut down until it could be made safe from downed power pole, wires on the roads etc. When Chief Fanning and the Chief of Midway fire and rescue said it was safe, the Town Council opened the island to owners and agents only, to prevent looting and sight seers clogging the streets. Power was restored to the Island (underground sections first) Tuesday night and Wednesday. Several days later the check points were removed from the causeway and relocated on the south end. Today the checkpoints were removed from the south end, but King Tides flooded much of Myrtle Avenue this morning.

The Town contracted with Goodson Construction, which scraped and rebuilt our dunes after Joaquin, and they began scraping work to build dunes to protect houses and infrastructure on the south end under an emergency permit issued by the state. The Corps of Engineers informed us Thursday that we needed to go through the same general permit application we did after Joaquin, which took many weeks. We stopped the dune building and sent the corps a picture showing the ocean coming under a house near Pritchard Street to Springs Street at 6:40PM Thursday evening after the storm. They immediately replied and came to the island Friday morning to assess the situation, and at 4:15PM they issued an emergency permit for the south third of the island for scraping and berm construction up to Hazard Street. Our contractor has been working night and day, except for last night as their crews were so tired they had to stop and give everybody some rest. They are back at it today with 10 or 12 pieces of heavy equipment.

If your house is on Springs Street the town has cleared “ramps” for you to get off the road an on your property. We ask that you not bulldoze the sand out from under your house until the dune is built in front, and the king tides subside at the end of the week. The sand under your house is packed hard and is helping to keep the high tides from coming under the houses and causing damage.  If it is moved now, it is soft and the tide will just wash it away.

We recognize that the next 40% of the island to the north lost 30 to 60 feet of dunes, and there are houses in the Historic District with beach at their front porches. The northernmost 25% of the island lost an average of 20 feet of dunes. Our engineers are working on permits to continue dune rebuilding from Hazard Street north, but it’s probably going to take up to a couple of weeks to get permits and complete the work south of Hazard, as the King Tides keep washing out some of what gets built up, but it is stopping most of the potential over wash, and keeping infrastructure safe. The Town will rebuild dunes as was done after Joaquin on all of the island as quickly as we can get permits.

The Town has contracted to clear debris off of the beach as soon as possible, and has entered into an agreement with the Highway department to remove debris from the road sides. Guidelines can be found at You are asked to place any hurricane-related debris you would like removed in the public right-of-way NOT THE STREET ITSELF.  For debris to be picked up, it must be separated into the categories listed on the county web site and must be un-bagged. Owners should not place debris near a water meter vault, fire hydrant or any other above-ground utility, and should avoid placing it directly under power lines. Contractors will make multiple passes beginning Wednesday, October 19 through impacted areas. If owners cannot safely set out debris at this time, or if contractors cannot safely enter submerged or blocked areas, additional debris removal passes will be scheduled.  For more information, call (843) 545-3999 between the hours of 7 a.m. and 7 p.m.

The Town will be updating this web page as more information is available. THANKS FOR YOUR PATIENCE!