Hurricane Matthew causes severe damage to rail lines across Horry, Marion, Columbus Counties

CHADBOURN, NC (WBTW) – Officials with RJ Corman say Hurricane Matthew  unleashed serious damage to the RJ Corman railroad lines across Horry, Marion and Columbus Counties.

The rail line is not operational yet, but repairs began a week ago.

Bill Henderson, VP of Sales and Marketing for RJ Corman Railroad Group says crews faced washouts 16 to 17 feet deep and 45 feet long.  There are still places where workers are waiting for high waters to subside before assessing the damage, but the rail company hopes to get the line fully operational in 3-4 weeks.

Approximately 9 businesses use the rail line.

RJ Corman received a $17.6 million TIGER grant in early August to use towards upgrades on the line that will significantly improve infrastructure and allow larger trains  to use the line. Those upgrades will likely start in the first half of 2017.