He said his aunt, Wanda Laboy, waited several hours after calling 911, so family came to help.
“We didn’t want to take the chance”, Merroli said.
“Everyone has been told they should leave, but I haven’t made up my mind”, she said. Firefighters are responding to calls, while residents are escaping their homes by boat.
Columbia’s fire chief told WLTX his department’s resources are overwhelmed in conducting so many rescues.
“It’s a historic flood the likes of which we haven’t seen”, Eric Rousey said. “Right now we are focused on saving people’s lives”.
First responders launch a boat in South Carolina to rescue stranded residents during flooding.
“These are people’s lives”, he said motioning behind him.
The Mississippi Emergency Management Agency announced on Sunday that they are sending Public Information Office Brett Carr to Columbia, South Carolina to ‘support response and recovery efforts to ongoing heavy rain and flooding’.
The Columbia area received the most rain in the state overnight, with up to 14 inches (36cms) reported in a few places since Saturday.
At least five weather-related deaths have been reported since rains began spreading over the Eastern Seaboard, which appeared to dodge the full fury of Hurricane Joaquin churning hundreds of miles out in the Atlantic.
In addition to South Carolina, coastal flooding was reported in North Carolina, Virginia, Maryland and Delaware.
Three people died Friday and Saturday in traffic incidents in South Carolina, and a vehicle passenger died in North Carolina on Thursday when a tree fell on Interstate 95, officials said.
A rainstorm pounded the East Coast, bringing South Carolina to a standstill.
More than 100 homes were evacuated in the Pepperhill Community of North Charleston as French Quarter Creek flooded over its banks.
Other districts near Charleston say they are considering whether to keep a regular schedule Friday. As a result, the city has seen its largest floods since 1989’s Hurricane Hugo.
“This was a record storm“, he said.
“We’re endorsing and even recommending that individuals get house, but also be in a position to work on…”
The areas highlighted in bright pink indicate areal flood warnings.
“I’ve been rushing around, making sure I have everything I need”, said the 65-year-old Gainey. “It’s odd leaving everything behind”. The news station reports that the firefighter was swept away by the water and found clinging to a tree.
Biblical amounts of rain continued to pour down onto the Palmetto State Sunday, sending rivers and creeks rising to record levels while smashing longstanding precipitation markers.
The low pressure area associated with the rain soaking the Carolinas is funneling heavy tropical moisture into the region, creating the torrential rainfall, the CNN Weather Center said. REUTERS/Randall Hill A downtown business is lined with sandbags for possible floods in downtown Georgetown, South Carolina October 4, 2015.
The rains as of Sunday morning have closed at least 411 state roads and 43 bridges, according to the state Department of Transportation, whose director pleaded with motorists not to drive.
Floodwaters rose quickly in Columbia Sunday morning overtaking roads and parking lots and submerging cars.
Streets were submerged Sunday in the historic old town of Charleston, South Carolina, as non-stop rain battered the city, with flooding closing restaurants and bars.
Over the next two days, parts of eastern South Carolina and North Carolina could receive 10 more inches of rain.