U.S. Congressman Richard Hudson (R- N.C. 8th District) visited Robbins Saturday to meet with state and local officials and to tour the aftermath of Hurricane Florence.
Robbins Town Manager David Lambert briefed the officials on the effects of Florence on the town’s infrastructure. Robbins was fortunate in that damage to businesses and homes was relatively minor, but the town’s public water and waste treatment facilities were severely damaged.
Robbins primary waste water treatment plant and pumping station were severely damaged by rising water. Currently, the town is depending on generators provided by Moore County to run a backup system.
The sewage is being treated but not up to nominal EPA standards. According to Robbins Mayor Lonnie English, the appropriate state and federal agencies have been notified.
Robbins Town Manager David Lambert shows the height of flood water inside the pumping station.
Low water pressure is also a problem. Robbins purchases water from Montgomery County, whose facilities suffered significant damage. Damage assessment is continuing, but the total damage could exceed several million dollars, some of which will be covered by the town’s insurance.
L,R: Jamie Boles, Richard Hudson, Lonnie English, Otis Ritter(County Commissioner), David Lambert.
Several factors are affecting the town’s recovery, including insurance procedures and problems finding contractors qualified to do the work. Both Lambert and English were satisfied with the support Robbins has received from Moore County, who provided generators and other ancillary equipment.
While the system is functional and Robbin’s water supply is safe, another major rain event could cause serious difficulties.
L,R: Richard Hudson, Otis Ritter, and Jamie Boles
Congressman Hudson and N.C. Representative Jamie Boles were both impressed by the town’s recovery efforts and are adamant that the federal, state and county government will provide as much aid to Robbins as necessary.
The damage assessment is ongoing as are temporary repairs to the town’s facilities. Currently, there is no estimate of how long repairs will take, but town, state and federal officials are continually assessing the situation and will provide necessary updates.
Article and photographs by Sandhills Sentinel Reporter, Chris Prentice.