As Hurricane Florence hits the coast, it's leaving everyone in the Midlands waiting and watching. The storm is expected to produce high amounts of rainfall in Columbia and surrounding communities.
Columbia Mayor Steve Benjamin says they learned some valuable lessons with the 2015 floods and those lessons are playing into preparedness as Florence slowly approaches.
"Looking at the top flooding locations around the Midlands, we are staging barricades. We are diligently working to clean out storm drains and, obviously encouraging citizens to do their part. If you are sheltering in place, we've been pushing out information so that we are all doing what we can do as individuals to prepare our families for what could be a long few days," says Benjamin.
Benjamin also advises that in an emergency, citizens should dial 9-1-1, however for Columbia-based non-emergencies, the city has set up a customer care hotline. The number to the hotline is 803-545-3300.