Hundreds of families on Tybee Island are in day-three of clean-up after Irma. On Lewis Avenue, home after home on this block was flooded. The tell-tale signs of a flood, water-ravaged household items, now reduced to trash and sitting out by the road.
There are two tales of clean-up on Tybee after Irma, depending on how your home was built.
On one side of the clean-up effort, there are people like the Garners who are hosing off the muck from their belongings under their homes. They’re counting their blessings. Their living space escaped water damage, but the view was terrifying as the tide came in with Irma. Those who live in stilted homes — above the water level — were spared.
Some good news here, the power has been restored to the lion’s share of homes here, but many will now start the long road to recovery after Irma, just 11 months after getting back on their feet after Hurricane Matthew.
Those living in homes built at ground level took on water.
We spoke with one Tybee Island resident who says he’s lived here for 80 years and he’s never seen anything like it.
We asked, “Where does Irma rank in your mind in terms of the storms that have come through over the years?
Tybee Island resident Jim Burke said, “It ranks number one. … Matthew ranks number two.”
So you got hit by the number one and number two storms in your lifetime on Tybee in the last 11 months?
“Right. We’ve had some, but a lot of them had water on the island, but it never affected us, like this.”