Hurricane Dorian on Ocracoke

State EMS sets up temporary building for Ocracoke Health Center; more updates

A temporary Ocracoke Health Center is located on the health center parking lot since the Ocracoke Health Center was flooded and is deemed uninhabitable. Hours are 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. Photo: C. Leinbach

Hurricane Dorian on Ocracoke updates Sept. 11, 2019. 5:48 p.m.

By Connie Leinbach

MEDICAL–Hyde Health Department will administer free tetanus shots starting at 10:30 a.m. on Thursday (Sept. 12)  at the Ocracoke Fire Department.   Dr. Jeff Williams, medical director for the Wake County EMS who is one of 10 in a medical strike team on Ocracoke during the emergency, recommended that people who have not received a tetanus shot within five years get a shot.

A temporary version of the Ocracoke Health Center is now on the center’s parking lot. Williams said the building is basically a section of a large field hospital the North Carolina Office of Emergency Medical Services uses for disaster relief.

“We’ve replicated Dr. Baker’s clinic in the parking lot,” he said.  The temporary clinic is for urgent care, he said. “If you have a complaint beyond a cut, go to the Ocracoke Health Center.  The first aid station in the OVFD is staffed with paramedics also for various complaints.

The first aid station in the OVFD is staffed with paramedics 24/7 while they are here during the emergency. Photo: C. Leinbach

“We have plenty of supplies to treat,” he said. “I sewed up two to three relatively large cuts right here in this bay.”  The first aid station at the OVFD is staffed 24/7 during the crisis.

Prescriptions: Beach Pharmacy in Hatteras, via David Quidley, has been delivering prescriptions daily, said Steve Evans, the pharmacist and who was on Ocracoke on Wednesday.  He said that water got into the pharmacy but it is cleaned up. 

“Hatteras got wet, but you got destroyed,” he said.

Prescriptions will continue to be delivered to the OVFD for now, Williams said. 

FEMA–Before a storm, the state and federal authorities can declare a pre-disaster emergency. This was done prior to Dorian making landfall. This allows funding for “emergency protective measures” that can include personnel, equipment, supplies, and evacuation assistance.

After an event, local and state officials work together to get all the information needed for the disaster declaration application compiled and submitted to the federal authorities. This work has been finalized today. Everything that the local government is required to do has been completed and submitted. 

While it is not yet promised, the sheer level of destruction documented on Ocracoke leads county officials to believe that we will be declared a disaster. We also expect a disaster recovery center with FEMA and other resources to be setup within a week.

NOTARY SERVICES: If you need a notary, Dana Long, a paramedic with Hyde County EMS, is also a notary and is at the OVFD daily.

DONATIONS: While goods continue to pour into Ocracoke, the island needs some things more than others at the moment. The Ocracoke Volunteer Fire Department is full of items and the Ocracoke air strip is not the best storage facility. 

“We are overwhelmed by the generosity and support of everyone who has donated financially and with all kinds of goods and services to this recovery effort,” said Ivey Belch, the commodities distribution manager for this emergency.

While this list will change daily during the Hurricane Dorian aftermath, the following is what is and is not needed at this time:

NEEDED:
Coffee
Rice (large bags; white and brown)
Floor squeegees
Gatorade
Flashlights, including headlamps, and batteries of all sizes
Tupperware-type plastic containers
Totes—medium and large
Battery-powered fans
Commercial floor fans
Propane cook stoves
Extension cords
Carpet knives, nail pullers
Tyvek suits
Boot socks
Tarps
5-W-30 oil for generators—lots of it.
Mops, rakes, shovels, hammers
Chain saws
Generators
Dehumidifiers
Diabetic Friendly Foods (like ensure)
Gas Cans
Trash Bags
Windex
Lysol anti-bacterial
48-gallon coolers
carpet knives
vinegar
peroxide
hand pump pressure washers
spray bottles 

NOT NEEDED RIGHT NOW:
Clothing (for now until we sort the piles already here)
Water
Pet food 
Bleach
Non-perishables 
Diapers, baby wipes
Baby food
Hygiene Kits
Buckets
Wash Cloths
Tarps
Charcoal
Paper Towels
Clorox Wipes
Blankets
Toilet Tissue
Brooms
Cardboard Boxes
Hand sanitizer

Lots of emergency vehicles of all kinds, from all over the state, make it look like a busy day during the visitor season post-Dorian. Photo by Spcialist Derahjei Taylor, a National Guardsman deployed to Ocracoke.

The Ocracoke air strip is full of tractor-trailers filled with donated items that will be used when the stacks inside the OVFD go down. Photo by Staff Sgt. Robert J. Shook, N.C. Army National Guard.

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