SPRING LAKE, N.C. (WNCN) – As Florida braces for Hurricane Ian, one North Carolina community is reflecting on the impact Hurricane Florence made on it back in 2018.

That storm caused devastating flooding in several areas, including Spring Lake. Still, it has been a long road to recovery for families around Vass Road.

William Lucas, 89, just moved back into his home at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020.

In 2018, flood waters rushed into his home during Hurricane Florence.

“They took all this stuff out, floods, ceilings and everything,” Lucas said.

Little River in Spring Lake breached and damaged several homes, churches and even washed away a motel.

“We had to stay in a hotel in Spring Lake,” Lucas said.

When Lucas and his son Vincent finally returned home, they found a mess.

William Lucas’ home (Justin Moore, Ray Duffy/CBS 17).

“There was no water in the neighborhood. There was none in the house. But you could smell the mold and mildew,” Vincent Lucas said.

To make matters worse they didn’t have flood insurance at the time. When William Lucas built the house, it was not available because he didn’t live in a flood zone.

Through the federal government and non-profit organizations Lucas was able to rebuild.

“When you know you’ve flooded and have no flood insurance, you’re just in a mess,” Vincent Lucas said.

Since Florence, Vincent Lucas has purchased flood insurance.

With the possibility of rain from Hurricane Ian by the end of the week in North Carolina, Vincent Lucas is keeping an eye on the weather, while his father is not as concerned.

“I don’t even think about it. You turn the television on, and they say it’s going to do this and it’s going to do that. It doesn’t bother me,” William Lucas said.

Additionally, CBS 17 talked to experts on Monday, who said having a go-bag ready just in case. Experts said people should have the following:

  • At least a three-day supply on non-perishable food;
  • Water(one gallon per person per day for 3 days);
  • Important documents in a waterproof container (birth certificate, bank account & insurance information, identification, etc.);
  • Medications;
  • Flash lights and batteries;
  • First aid kit;
  • Moist towelettes, garbage bags, and plastic ties for personal sanitation needs;
  • Change of clothes;
  • Cash.