GARLAND, NC - The Williams' home had experienced two episodes of flooding due to hurricanes. In 1984 flood waters entered the house soaking duct work, all flooring and carpets as well as damaging utilities and appliances. The family was displaced from their home for two months. When Hurricane Fran soaked eastern North Carolina in 1996, the Williams' house again had flood damage and the family was again displaced for about two months.
In 1984, the Williams family repaired their home using combined funds from FEMA ($28,000) and their own savings ($5,000). Again in 1996 a combination of monies, $25,000 from FEMA and $7,500 from personal savings, was needed to repair the home. When the final repairs were completed, Mr. Williams requested the help of the Sampson County Commissioners to relocate his home out of the flood zone. The County awarded him a block grant, and in the spring of 1999 the Williams home was relocated 3-1/2 miles out of the flood zone.
This relocation project was completed just four months before Hurricane Floyd (1999) struck eastern North Carolina. This home sustained no damage as a result.
Unfortunately, Hurricane Floyd completely destroyed Mrs. Williams’ mother's home which was in the same flood zone area they had just moved out of. "Judging from the water in my mother-in-law's home, I would have had at least 4 to 5 feet of water in my house if it had not been moved!" states Mr. Williams.
The fact that there was no damage to the home as a result of the hurricane clearly speaks to the benefit of the relocation. The combined costs to repair the home were $53,000 in FEMA funds and $12,000 in personal savings for a grand total of $65,000. The amount of money awarded by the county to relocate the home was $53,000. The benefit to cost ratio is 2:1.