Aiken Standard (Newspaper) - August 24, 2011, Aiken, South Carolina
Sam’s Club eyeing Aiken
BY SUZANNE R. STONE
Wal-Mart Stores Inc. is once again taking a look at Aiken as a possible site for a new Sam’s Club.
Glen Wilkins of Wal-Mart public affairs said in a phone interview Tuesday that the company has interest in Aiken County but could not identify any specific sites or plans under consideration.
“I know that the interest is there,
but I can’t say anything as to this comer or that comer in Aiken,” he
In 2006, the discount store giant had plans for a Sam's Club on a site near the intersection of Whiskey Road and Powderhouse Road. The Aiken County Planning Commission denied approval of a concept plan for the members-only bulk w arehouse retail store in July of that year.
The rejection of the concept plan
came on the heels of local residents’ expressions of concern about the impact of the megastore on their neighborhoods. It may have been similar concerns that scrapped a Cleveland real estate company’s 2007 plans to develop a 150,000 square-foot shopping center on the same property.
The company sought out suitable alternative sites once that plan was scuttled, but those efforts were unsuccessful, and, in 2008,
a Wal-Mart representative told the Aiken Standard they had no plans to build a store in Aiken.
In January 2008, an Aiken resident proposed his 17 acres of land on Whiskey Road near Duke’s Bar-B-Q as a possible Sam’s Club site, but Wal-Mart spokesperson Tara Stewart said the property did not meet the company’s basic needs for a Sam’s Club location.
SEE SAM’S CLUB 16AYOUR LOCAL SOURCE SINCE 1867
WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 24,2011_VOL. 145, NO. 236 * 50 c
Local officials prepare for Irene
BY AMY BANTON
As Hurricane Irene chums through the Atlantic, various entities around Aiken County prepare, whether the stomi impacts the area or not.
As of Tuesday, the forecasts suggests that the path of the category I hurricane will be farther east than expected, making landfall around North Wilmington, N.C., according to the National Weather Sen ice.
The storm was likely to strengthen into a Category 4 monster by the time it makes a landfall ip the United States, according to the Associated Press.
WHEN IS RAIN COMING?
• As for the Aiken area, NWS Meteorologist Dave Schuetrum said that it lodes like Aiken will receive little to rn* rain from the storm, according to Tuesday’s forecast, He added that Charleston may see a little bit of rain with winds from 20 to 30 miles per hour.
“for us, this is looking better and better,” Schuetrum said, “ft could veer (west) more, but right now, I think w e’re out of the main path of it.”
Meteorologists are keeping a close eye on the storm, and residents in Aiken are preparing just in case.
• The American Red Cross is readying a full East Coast response by preparing shelters for evacuees, pre-posit toning numerous emergency response vehicles and disaster supplies and mobilizing disaster workers to areas that arc expected to be impacted by Irene.
“ This is something that is going to be ongoing, and we are definitely getting our volunteers on standby for any situation that arises,” said Lindsay Findley, chapter executive of the Aiken County Red Cross
• Capt. Angela Repass of the Aiken Sal-
TRACKING THE STORM: An image released by N0AA made from the GEOS East satellite shows Hurricane Irene Tuesday as it passes over Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic. The storm is
on a track that could see it reach the-U.S. Southeast as a major storm by the end of the week.
vat ion Army said their campaign will he “stocked and ready to go.”
She said the Salvation Army Charlotte headquarters has a disaster team on standby for the Carolinas, and the Atlanta office is closely monitoring the situation. Immediate response for affected areas includes providing w ater, food and shelter along w ith cleanup kits if necessary.
• If called by Aiken County’s Emergency Management Division, Aiken Public Safety Lt. Dav id I umo said law enforcement would assist with plans and procedures. The designated shelter is South Aiken High School.
“We have 20-plus officers on standby in the event fruit there would be spin-off' tornadoes or flooding issues that need to be addressed,” Tunio said.
Officers know that they have to be av ailable at a moment’s notice.
"They don’t leav e the Aiken area when
they are on standby,” he said.
Public Safety has a number of backups for communications, including emergence phone lines, cellular phones and police radios.
• Aiken County Sheri irs Office Sgl. Jason Fccmster said, to cope with any influx of evacuees, schedules can be adjusted to meet the needs of those who come to Aiken.
“Deputies would be placed on standby and told to keep their cellular phones and (police) radios with them,” Feemster said.
• Aiken Public Works and Serv ices have checked all of its equipment and generators just in case the storm causes arn damage such as knocking down large tree branches, according to Assistant Public Works Director Tim Coakley.
Catch basins are being checked, and the
SEE IRENE 13A
Resident fires back in home invasion
Warrenville man shoots at intruder atter waking up to find a stranger in his house.
BY KAREN DAILY
A Warrenv ille man wds startled awake before sunrise Tuesday morning by a creaking floorboard in his bedroom and awoke to see the silhouette of a man standing before him.
Thirty-one-year-old Steven Hayes said he reached over and grabbed his shotgun.
“I always sleep with a shotgun by my bed, and, somehow, someone picked the lock to my door and got into the house,” Hayes said. “When I pumped it. he took off, and I jumped up behind hun and ran atter him.”
Hayes then turned on a tamp but said he was still a little disoriented at 6 arn.
He said he noticed the intruder had already slipped out the hack door and was aiming a gun at him.
Still armed with his shotgun, Hayes said he yelled at the intruder, “I’m gonna kill you, vou son of a bitch, for breaking into my house.”
He said he fired two shots, but the suspect ran into the woods.
“I think I got him with that second shot," he said.
The gun was loaded with birdshot.
“Had it been buckshothe said.
Hayes has lived alone at the residence for about a year and said he hasn’t had any other problems. He said he comes and goes to work, but there's not a w hole lot of traffic into his home, and he wondered if the intruder thought the residence was vacant.
”1 don’t know who he was or what he wanted, but I'll be waiting on him next tune,” he added.
SEE BREAK-IN, 16AIN THE NEWSLibyan rebels storm compound
Hundreds of Libyan rebels stormed Moammar Gadhafi’s compound Tuesday, but they found no sign of the man himself.
SEE INTERNATIONAL NEWS 14A
County residents feel Va. earthquake
BY KAREN DAILY “ "
coft East Coast earthquake shakes buildings and rattles nerves from Georgia to Maine. 112A
What has been reported as the second most powerful earthquake in Virginia history was felt by many along the eastern seaboard Tuesday, including those In mg in the CSRA.
Local residents lit up Facebook and Tw iller Tuesday afternoon w ith talk of the 5.8 magnitude earthquake, which officials said struck at 1:51 pan about 40 miles northwest of Richmond, Va., war the town of Mineral.
Many of those who felt the slight tremor locally said they didn’t initially know exactly what was going on.
Woodside resident Mary Jo Wilson said she
was reading a book when she suddenly felt her arms shaking.
She said she had a book rn hand and had her amis resting on a chair when she noticed the mov ei neat
“I would have never felt anything, but I was reading, and I was rn total silence concentrating on the book,” she said.
Friends of hers w ho were busy golfing at a nearby golf course said they didn’t feel a thing, she added.
“I thought I was going crazy, she joked.
Wilson said she flumed on the telev ision to see what may have iiappcncd and realized she was feeling shaking from the earthquake.
No major injuries or damage were reported locally. The earthquake triggered the shutdown of a Virginia nucleal power plant ami prompted alerts at rune others across the East Coast, according to the Associated Press, but there was no shutdown of any kind al the Savannah River Site.
SEE EARTHQUAKE, 16A
Jennifer Atchley Turner, Aiken John Russell Jackson, New Ellenton Judy Blythe, North Augusta
SEE DEATHS AND FUNERALS, 6A
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