1-800-SWEEPER Blog

Providing Curb Appeal in South Carolina

Sep 27, 2017

Providing Curb Appeal in South Carolina

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SouthCo Commercial Curb Appeal in Darlington, SC, is a pretty typical sweeping service company according to owner Debbie McCaskill. When we ask sweeping company Partners how they got started in business it isn’t unusual to hear that they started based on the experience of a family member. In this case, Debbie’s brother-in-law, David McCaskill of AccuSweep Services, Inc. in Columbia, South Carolina originally told Debbie and her husband, Dale that they should start a sweeping company.

When asked if David was correct that power sweeping was a solid business opportunity, Debbie replied: “He must have been right – that was 27 years ago!”

Two trucks in Southco’s fleet that proudly show support to two great causes!
We stand together to bring awareness to Colon Cancer and Alzheimer’s Disease.

Since the startup of the company in 1990, the McCaskill’s have kept up a 3-part approach to servicing customers with the work fairly evenly divided among sweeping, landscaping, and maintenance. On the sweeping side of the business, 95% of their business is cleaning and servicing parking lots. And when Debbie says servicing – she is being very inclusive. Southco’s complete approach is all encompassing when it comes to maintaining parking lots. Pot hole repairs, striping, seal coating, portering, pressure washing – even changing the lamps in overhead pole lighting and wall packs is all part of the service provided by Southco. Basically, anything that needs to be accomplished in maintaining the exterior grounds of a shopping center is accomplished by Debbie’s company.

Debbie originally based the company on the idea that one service provider is the most cost effective and efficient way to manage maintenance projects. Having created a “one call” approach along with Southco’s consistency and quality set the company apart from the competition. Debbie also emphasizes the company’s focusing on training, continually improving employees’ skills on the job.

Because Southco serves the coastal areas of South Carolina which includes the uncertainty of hurricanes and tropical storms, preparation before storms and certainly clean-up after storm surges has been a dominant theme throughout their years in the sweeping business. Prep work prior to a hurricane means securing windows and doorways with sheets of plywood and setting sandbags in front of doors to keep water out.

Southco has a severe weather email blast that is ready to be sent out whenever national weather alerts are raised from a hurricane “watch” to “warning” level in the area. The planning for the crews to be activated happens with enough advance notice to activate Southco’s crews with about 12 hours’ notice.

Southco Sweepers Clean the Track at Darlington Raceway

When it comes to high profile jobs – Southco has the somewhat enviable honor of cleaning the track at what many NASCAR racing fans and drivers refer to as “The Track Too Tough to Tame.”  Darlington Raceway near Darlington, South Carolina, at 1.366 miles long, is home to the Southern 500 which is an annual NASCAR tradition in early September.

The work for the Southern 500 starts a few weeks prior to race day, with Southco’s crews clearing out the walls and sweeping the track multiple times daily. Work continues with the day-of-race involving the Southco crew suited up in fire-protective gear and working directly under the supervision of NASCAR. NASCAR communicates with Southco via headsets telling them when to come out and what to clean up. Of course, clean-up only happens during a caution warning on the track.

Relationships extend further than the McCaskill clan. Debbie credits the company’s membership in South Carolina Trucking Association — a valued industry group — with helping to obtain both affordable health care coverage, and supplemental life insurance coverage for all the Southco employees. Treating all member of the team is one of the values that has helped sustain the business for what now approaches 30 years.