Conway man considers possible buyout as Waccamaw River reaches major flood stage again

Horry County Flooding

CONWAY, S.C. (WMBF) - The water along Waccamaw Lake Drive is only going to get higher over the next few days.

The Waccamaw River near Conway is forecasted to crest at 14.5 feet by Wednesday, and it’s just enough to make neighbor Mitchell Finney consider moving.

“We’re learning to live with it,” said Finney.

Finney said in the almost two years of living in the neighborhood, he’s gotten the flooding routine down. Everything from moving his car up the street to dry land and putting on his waders to get out of the neighborhood to go to the grocery store.

He even has a rowboat to get back and forth.

“It’s a little more than what we expected,” he said.

The Waccamaw River has flooded the neighborhood three times in the past year. Finney said he never was told it could get this bad.

“When we first moved here they said, ‘Oh the hurricanes bring in bad floods’ but it’s gotten to the point where it doesn’t have to rain here, if it rains up in North Carolina it all comes down here,” he said.

Finney said now he’s wondering if living on the river is still worth it. He said he’s heard about possible buyouts from the county and said if offered, he’d consider it.

“Probably if I could get the money out of my house to go, relocate, I probably would at this point,” said Finney.

At a meeting last week, Horry County’s subcommittee on flooding said they’re in the process of applying for state funds for a buyout program.

Finney said he thinks some people in the county do care about fixing flooding, but he also wonders just how much.

“The solution is very expensive,” he said. “So it’s hard for anything to get done. We might not be worth all that money. I don’t know.”

When it comes to the buyout program the county is still working out all the details. If they did get funding approved, they said homeowners who experience repeated damage and are in flood hazard zones would be a priority.

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