Hurricane

After two years of hurricanes, Hilton Head breathes a sigh of relief as Florence leaves us be

It was business as usual Saturday at Skull Creek Boathouse as residents and visitors to Hilton Head felt a sense of relief at avoiding Florence.
It was business as usual Saturday at Skull Creek Boathouse as residents and visitors to Hilton Head felt a sense of relief at avoiding Florence. Caitlin Turner - Island Packet

If you looked around Hilton Head Island Saturday as Tropical Storm Florence threatened the rest of the state, it was business as usual on a cloudy, yet blustery day.

And that’s just what many thought the island deserves after two years that saw a hurricane and a tropical storm — Matthew and Irma respectively — that brought downed trees, power outages, flooding and a county-wide exodus.

As he sat at Skull Creek Boathouse’s bar Saturday, Jack Cain, an Indigo Run resident, was one of many who appeared relaxed and thankful to have avoided a potentially dangerous storm.

“I had a great game of golf today,” Cain said. “... We experienced Matthew the first year we arrived here, and we evacuated. We evacuated last year and came back, but this year we felt we had time to respond if necessary.”

Cain said he and his wife evacuated for the last two years to Virginia to stay with their daughter. He said he thought Gov. Henry McMaster made the right call to revoke the mandatory evacuation he ordered for Beaufort County earlier in the week, and that the county government was prepared no matter what.

“I’m definitely grateful,” Ashley Connelly, a Ridgeland resident, said as she sat at the restaurant. “I think we were due for one year off after the last three.”

“I feel bad for everyone else who is experiencing the storm,” Dan Connelly, her husband and a Bluffton firefighter, said.

Brad Wuest, a Marshland Road resident, said he evacuated for Hurricane Matthew and Tropical storm Irma, but decided to stay this year and is happy with his choice.

He and his girlfriend Allison Kenney, a Columbia native, came back to the island to escape the storm’s effects in Columbia.

“I didn’t worry about this one,” Wuest said. “I figured it was coming either way and I shouldn’t worry about it.”

  Comments