Pee Dee residents’ opinions mixed on winter weather

“Pee Dee residents’ opinions mixed on winter weather”

MARLBORO COUNTY, SC (WMBF) - Communities in the Pee Dee were busy Wednesday preparing for another possible winter storm. The South Carolina Department of Transportation started prepping roads for the snow Tuesday afternoon, finishing up Wednesday afternoon.

Crews were out all day putting down salt brine to help make them manageable to drive on. Along with brine, they also put straight salt on bridges. About 10,000 gallons of salt was used, which is their usual amount for a snow storm.

Lorena Pate, Assistant District Maintenance Engineer for the Florence office SCDOT, said while they don't expect as much this time around, they're ready just in case it is.

"Interstates are our top priority, routes to the hospitals," Pate said. "Our second priorities are U.S. and S.C. routes so we keep an eye on those and then once the snow actually hits we will go to the interstate and make sure it's open and then work our way down."

In Marlboro County, where the storm was expected to hit the hardest, emergency management officials said they are keeping a close eye on the storm, but agreed they don't expect it to hit as bad.

Steve Akers, Director of Marlboro Emergency Management, said last time was worst because of cold temperatures for an extended period of time. This time he said he expects a short period of snow.

Akers said in the event of an emergency, like prolonged power outage, they will call on the Red Cross and open shelters. However, since the city is still operated normally, Akers said it's a matter of waiting and watching.

"As of right now, we're still getting snow so we're just standing by to assist DOT in any way that we can simply because we don't have a hospital in this county so we have to make sure that our roads are maintained open so that we can get folks to the hospital if needed," Akers said.

As for residents in Bennettesville, some people admitted they don't expect it to be as bad as last time so they're not preparing for it. Meanwhile, others were out and about stocking up on water, milk, bread and other items for the winter storm.

"That's why I'm here now at Walmart picking up a few things and to get home and make sure I got what I need," Michael Rogers said.

Opinions on whether another winter storm would be bad or not varied too. While some people said they're ready for warmer weather, kids were hoping for another snow day.

"Everything closes down down here. They get like 2 inches of snow and everything closes down - no school, but I can understand that because of the buses, you know, the safety of the children, but I just want it to go away," Deborah Sellers said.

"I like it cause you could make a snowman and stuff and that's why I like it," Tehvin said.

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