Pawleys Island on the road to recovery after Hurricane Dorian

Hurricane Dorian Recovery on Pawleys Island

PAWLEYS ISLAND, S.C. (WMBF) - A beach renourishment project is set to begin on the beaches along Pawleys Island on Oct 1. Now, town leaders say due to the impacts they’re seeing from Hurricane Dorian, the project will probably start sooner than later.

Pawleys Island Mayor James Braswell said during the hurricane, about 3-and-a-half feet of sand was washed on the road from the beach.

Braswell says officials with the South Carolina Department of Transportation came to Pawleys Island Saturday and laid out a plan to get the road back open to the public.

Braswell said it’s estimated to take around 300 dump truck loads to completely clear the sand from Springs Avenue.

The sand is not only blocking the road but also many driveways. One of driveways belongs to Evelyn and Mark Adams who have lived on Pawleys Island for more than 20 years and have seen their fair share of hurricanes.

“It’s a wonderful place to live. But when you do live in a place like this, you do have to make a conscious decision and realize what you could be letting yourself in for and you have to be okay with that,” Mark said.

He said over time, he’s seen the beach become more and more narrow and truly believes the renourishment project would make a world of difference for those living on the island.

“That beach renourishment project is scheduled to put 1,100,000 cubic yards of sand on the beach so that the beach will be significantly higher than it is now and also a good deal wider,” explained Mark.

David Chapman says he and his family have made the trip from Oklahoma to Pawleys Island every year for the last eight years. For the last three, they’ve been run off by a hurricane. He said he thinks the renourishment project will build the beach back up to ensure its longevity.

“It appears to me that the dunes are the biggest part of the whole deal. Keeping the dunes up to keep the sea there, that sea is a mighty thing and it’ll carry that sand all over everywhere and that’s what’s happened here. It’s carried the beach to the street,” Chapman said.

Council members will vote at a town hall meeting Monday night on whether or not to begin the renourishment project now or to wait until Oct. 1.

SCDOT says they expect to have the road cleared of sand and back open by Tuesday.

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