Public Service Announcement: September 13, 2017
Contact: Dhwani Patel
Phase 3 reentry
GLYNN COUNTY, Ga.- Beginning 8:00 a.m. on Thursday, September 14, Glynn County will be implementing Phase 3 of its reentry plan. Phase 3 allows residents from Glynn County, the City of Brunswick, and Jekyll Island to return home. Please be advised that critical infrastructure is still fragile and there are limitations to JWSC, Georgia Power, and other utilities when residents return. Due to the limitations of sanitary sewer, traffic control, and power there are hazards to public health that remain.
On Thursday, September 7, 2017, the Glynn County Board of Commissioners ordered a mandatory evacuation after receiving intel that Hurricane Irma was predicated to impact Glynn County as a category 3-4 hurricane. Although Hurricane Irma did not arrive as a category 4 hurricane, this area was still impacted by tropical storm force winds of over 70 mph, historic storm surge, unprecedented flooding, and tornadoes. The catastrophic damage resulted in a loss of over 90% of power capabilities, a loss of 75% of water and sewer services, many roads impassable, flooding in major parts of our community, and a loss of all traffic signals.
This unusual incident has impacted all of Florida and a majority of Georgia. Federal resources are already stressed due to recovery efforts in Texas. Due to the severe nature of the impacts we received, the critical infrastructure of Glynn County is fragile. According to JWSC, 75% of their pumps are still down. Sanitary sewage is offline and not operational. Water is currently safe to drink on the mainland and St. Simons Island, however there is a boil water advisory for Jekyll Island at this time. As of earlier today, 68% of GA Power customers are still without electricity in Glynn County. Despite the storm having passed, there are still dangers that remain including fallen trees, contaminated standing water, and live wires. The ground is saturated with water and we expect additional trees to fall. We would like to reiterate once again that a traffic light without power should be treated as a four way stop, please proceed with extreme caution. The Dunbar Creek Bridge on Sea Island was inspected by GDOT and determined unsafe and has been closed.
A curfew is in effect from midnight to 6 a.m. tonight. Beginning tomorrow, Thursday, September 14, a curfew will be in effect from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. until Saturday, September 16, 2017. Glynn County offices will reopen on Friday, September 15. Superior Court, Magistrate Court and Property Records will be open on Friday. Court hearings for Superior Court have been cancelled this week and will resume Monday, September 18. Court hearings for Magistrate Court will also resume Monday.
Republic Services will begin picking up solid waste on Friday, September 15. They will pick up the regularly scheduled Thursday’s garbage on Friday and the regularly scheduled Friday’s garbage on Saturday. They will begin their normal schedule starting Monday, September 18. In addition, residents have the option of utilizing their recycling bins to dispose of garbage for the next two weeks. Yard waste and regular recycling service will not be picked up until October 2 to accommodate the increase of household garbage. Additional bags left outside a bin will not be picked up; however, household garbage can be dropped off at the drop off centers free of charge for the next two weeks. The drop off locations are located at 550 Young Lane in Brunswick and behind the farmers market on St. Simons Island.
This is a message from the Department of Public Health for food service permit holders in Glynn County: If you experienced a power service interruption during the recent storm, Glynn County Health Department requires you to verify the temperatures of your coolers prior to reopening. Perishable food temperatures should maintain 41 degrees Fahrenheit or below. Please discard any and all perishable food items that are above 41 degrees Fahrenheit. Just remember, when in doubt, throw it out. If you have any questions, please contact our local Environmental Health Office. Please note that a re-opening inspection is required for ALL facilities due to limited sanitary sewer and water interruptions. Again NO facility should open until authorization has been given by the local health department. Please contact the Environmental Health office at (912) 279-2940 if you have any questions.
We know that you are anxious to return home, but please note that the storm passed through less than 48 hours ago. Glynn County will be rebuilding from this disaster for months to come. Safety of citizens and the crews out in the field continues to be our main priority as we clean up the hazardous conditions. When these conditions have been contained, you will still need to proceed with caution because the roads will be inundated with traffic. We will provide additional updates as often as possible on the www.glynncounty.org/irma website and the Glynn County Board of Commissioners Facebook Page.