Hurricane Joaquin a rainmaker for Bladen County

By: By Erin Smith -

ELIZABETHTOWN — Bladen County Emergency Management officials are monitoring the progress of Hurricane Joaquin, according to Bladen County Emergency Management Director Bradley Kinlaw.

“We’re monitoring the storm,” said Kinlaw.

He said as of Thursday evening, it appears the storm will be mainly a rain event for Bladen County.

“Shelter staff are on standby,” said Kinlaw of the emergency shelters.

He said county officials are prepared to open emergency shelters if the need should arise.

“We’re getting three conference calls per day (from state Emergency Management Officials regarding the storm),” said Kinlaw on Thursday.

He said residents need to be vigilant and monitor the progress of the storm and be prepared.

Kinlaw said residents need to prepare their survival kit and some recommended items include bottled water, batteries for your radio and make sure your mobile phone is fully charged.

Kinlaw said if you are making plans to leave for the storm, make sure you turn off the power supply to your home and let someone know where you will be staying.

He advised that folks can monitor Bladen County Emergency Services Facebook page and local media outlets for updates regarding the storm.

Bladen County was placed under a flood warning by the National Weather Service office in Wilmington at about 10 a.m.

The heavy rains were making the morning commute miserable on Friday as one Waste Management truck was found mired in mud up to the front axle.

Many events scheduled for Friday and Saturday have been postponed concealed altogether. The Cycle NC Mountains to the Sea ride, which was originally supposed to pass through Bladen County, was ended early on Thursday in Lumberton. The United of Bladen County’s Fun Crazy Color Run was postponed until Saturday, Oct. 24, and The Bladen County Republican party’s Fall Fling event was canceled.

Many area high school football games were moved from Friday night to Thursday night.

In Cumberland County, a 72-year-old Fayetteville woman was killed when a tree fell across Interstate 95 on two vehicles. She was a passenger on one of those vehicles. Investigators claim the incident was weather related.

Erin Smith can be reached by calling 910-862-4163.

By Erin Smith