COLUMBIA (AP) — Gov. Nikki Haley is keeping the National Guard on active duty through Nov. 25 so units can continue helping local governments make emergency repairs.
Haley signed an order Friday allowing National Guardsmen to keep working, primarily in the capital city of Columbia and rural Clarendon County.
The governor's office says officials of those local governments requested the continued assistance. Guardsmen are needed to repair impassable roads in Clarendon County and help with breached dams at the Columbia Canal.
According to the state Department of Transportation, more than half of the 99 roads still closed nearly a month after a catastrophic storm are in hard-hit Richland and Clarendon counties.
Haley signed a state of emergency declaration in the days leading up to the Oct. 2-5 rainstorm, which dumped up to two feet of rain in some parts of the state. She signed a second state of emergency Oct. 15 that expires Friday. That applied to the 20 counties declared disaster areas by President Barack Obama.
Since the flooding began, the National Guard has completed 350 missions statewide, 125 of them involving road repairs. Others include leading helicopter, boat, and high-water vehicle rescues, transporting meals, water, and sandbags, and conducting security and traffic checkpoints.