More firefighters from Columbia and Lexington County are headed to the Lowcountry to help with search and rescue efforts in the wake of Hurricane Matthew.
Ten structural collapse technicians from the Columbia, as well as seven Lexington County Fire Service collapse technicians, went to Hilton Head Island on Sunday morning, according to the Columbia Fire Department.
Meanwhile, two Columbia teams of swiftwater technicians – deployed to Colleton County two days ago – relocated to Dorchester County on Sunday morning due to significant flooding in that area.
The Columbia Fire Department is now back to normal operations, officials said. The department brought in extra staffing due to an increase in calls between midnight and 6 p.m. Saturday.
Within that time, firefighters responded to more than 260 calls, officials said.
Columbia Fire Chief Aubrey Jenkins urged citizens to be on the look out, avoid downed power lines and to treat all downed lines as live.
Jenkins also said that anyone who is without power should never use a generator inside a home or attached garage – even if the garage door is open – because of carbon monoxide poisoning.