South Carolina Forestry Commission
News Release

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 13, 2004

ICE STORM DECLARED A FOREST DISASTER

(Columbia, SC) State Forester Bob Schowalter has declared a forest disaster in 15 ice-ravaged counties. Schowalter’s proclamation calls on forestry interests throughout the state to cooperate in recovery operations.

Counties included in the disaster proclamation include: Aiken, Bamberg, Barnwell, Calhoun, Clarendon, Edgefield, Florence, Greenwood, Horry, Marion, McCormick, Orangeburg, Saluda, Sumter, and Williamsburg.

The Forestry Commission is conducting a systematic aerial survey of the storm-damaged area to determine the amount of loss. Some survey information may be available early next week; a final estimate of economic loss is expected by the end of February.

Pine forests were hard hit throughout the storm area; recently thinned stands suffered the most severe damage. The greatest damage to hardwood forests occurred in major drainages in the eastern part of the state.

Of special concern are forest stands planted through participation in the federally-funded Conservation Reserve Program (CRP). Because of contract limitations, owners of damaged CRP forests should contact their local Farm Service Agency office before beginning salvage operations.

Information on dealing with ice damaged timber is available through office of the SC Forestry Commission.

-END-

For more information, contact: Ken Cabe, 803-896-8820.


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