A letter to Tega Cay Residents from Mayor George Sheppard addressing the May 11th 2011 Storm
Dear Fellow Residents,
As I write this letter to you and think about the early morning on May 11th, I am very thankful no one was serious injured. The loss of material possessions can be replaced or repaired.
I would like to update you on the City?s plan and reaction to Wednesday morning storm. I am extremely grateful for the Tega Cay Volunteer Fire Department, the Tega Cay Police Department, and the Tega Cay Public Works crew. The TCFD was on Tega Cay Drive as early as midnight making sure the Tega Cay drive was open and accessible. The Tega Cay Police Department assisted the Fire Department in keeping residents away of dangerous areas. The public works crews were in the City soon after 1:00 AM to start the clean up. The inbound lanes of Tega Cay Drive were completely closed to all traffic until approximately 3:30 AM. Following NIMS (National Incident Management System) protocol, our Fire Chief Scott Szymanski served as the incident commander as the first on scene, and remained as such until the streets were passable. Once the incident was downgraded, command was transferred to the City?s Operations Director, Charlie Funderburk to coordinate cleanup efforts. Our City?s Operations crews were on site until approximately 7pm Wednesday evening. Workers returned at 7 am this morning to resume cleanup efforts and will remain on 12 hour shifts until all the debris is cleaned up.
On Wednesday afternoon the Grant Duffield, Charlie Funderburk, Chief Szymanski, Tim Gillette and other municipal and county leaders were part of a conference call with York County EOC (Emergency Operations Center) to discuss the situation. According to the National Weather Service representative, we were hit with a straight line wind. The storm had sustaining winds of 90-95 mph, which is equivalent to hurricane force winds. Over the next several days leaders around the county will be evaluating the damage in their areas to determine how much will be spent in cleanup efforts. If the cleanup costs hit the required threshold as set by FEMA, we could potentially receiving funding from FEMA as reimbursement for our cleanup costs.
As previously stated we have our public works crews working 12 hour days to facilitate the clean up. We have also contracted with several tree companies to assist us in the clean up. At this point in time, the need to apply for a city tree permit has been suspended. If you hire a contractor to clean up debris from your home, please make sure they have a City of Tega Cay business license and that they haul the debris away with them. If you are cleaning up the debris yourself, please place it at the back of the curb in front of your home. Please do not place the debris in the street causing unnecessary traffic hazards. You do not have to cut the debris into 4? lengths and of course the diameter size will not matter either. City crews will collect the debris in whatever size your place it at the curb until May 19, as long as you get it to the curb. During the next week, please refrain from placing bagged items at for collection as crews are trying to concentrate on cleaning up the City and getting all the tree parts hauled away. Crews will resume collecting bagged debris items the week of May 23.
Thank you in advance for your patience and understanding during the cleanup process. Crews are working as quickly as possible and will get to your debris as soon as they can.
The storm was nearly 3 weeks ago this week. The newer parts of Tega Cay began and completed their major cleanup weeks ago, yet your administration, as usual, neglects the older sections of the city. We still have mounds of tree limbs and branches clogging our roads. Perhaps we should just move the waste to Anchorage and then it would be immediately cleaned up. If it weren’t so predictable, it would almost be funny, but I cannot find any true humor in the lack of services we receive for our tax dollars.