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Frigid Cold Creates Havoc Across County

web posted January 8, 2014

COUNTY As temperatures dropped to between 10 and 12 degrees Tuesday night county residents awoke to a range of problems from loss of power due to overloaded power grids to busted water pipes and one woman calling police to help her get out of her home due to her doors being "frozen shut". The school district had nearly a dozen busses that wouldn't start and the Trinity Mission and Rehab Center had to move patients due to a water leak collapsing a portion of the ceiling and flooding a portion of the building.

Johnston residents awoke to no power and in some cases no water. SCE&G issued a press release early in the morning stating that due to the overload of supply demands, several areas of the state were without power. The outage covered at least 2,000 structures in the Johnston area until power could be restored, including Johnston Elementary which came back online around 10 am.

911 dispatchers fielded a number of calls about busted water pipes flooding their homes and the residents, mostly women, not knowing how to cut off their main water lines at the water meter. Elderly residents called due to power outages and no heat in the bitter cold. Deputies responded to each 911 call throughout the day to assist each caller.

Just after noon the Edgefield Fire Department was called to Trinity Mission with a report of a fire alarm. When firefighters arrived there was no fire, however; a main water supply line in the ceiling had broken and flooded several of the patient rooms and the halls. Some patients had to be moved to other areas as repairs were underway.

Edgefield County School Superintendent Greg Anderson said that crews were working on getting busses started at 5 am Tuesday morning and at one point had at least nine busses that would not start due to the frigid temperatures. One by one, the buses were brought "back online" are were able to complete their rounds to pick up students on the 2-hour delayed schedule.

Local plumbers were overwhelmed with calls from other residents with water pipes either busted or frozen.

Though temperatures dropped into the lower teens last night, fewer calls of problems are expected for Wednesday.

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