Moultrie officials concerned about rain fall -, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Moultrie officials concerned about rain fall

By Jennifer Emert - bio | email

ALBANY, GA (WALB) - Colquitt County's Emergency Management Agency is calling for a voluntary evacuation of everyone living in low-lying areas of the county. The county was anticipating as much as eight inches of rainfall through Wednesday morning.

The county had to close 38 roads when they were doused with rainfall this weekend.

Of those roads that were closed this weekend, nearly half of them remain closed still under water. Drainage ditches along those roads like this one are full, which has county officials warning residents that come later tonight, depending on how much rain Colquitt County gets traveling could be dangerous.

 Paula Norris had to cancel a party Sunday night when flash flood waters turned her restaurant the Tarragon Grill into an island.

"By Sunday morning we got over here about 10:00 and the road was completely full it was up to about the back step," Norris said.

Now she's watching the field beside the restaurant already saturated with water closely for signs to evacuate. Public Works Director Danny Ward said he's never seen Talmadge Drive get swallowed up so quickly by flood waters.

"Any more rain we get is just going to be a straight run off so, we have concerns that it won't soak in so we're trying to prepare for that run off," Ward said.

The Moultrie Housing Authority like the county isn't taking any chances. Six units that had to be evacuated Saturday when two inches of water spilled in are vacant still, the furniture on blocks.

"We want to wait and see what affect the rain we're about to have is going to have on our units," said Housing Authority Director Glenda Hall.

Crews have been doing what they can to clear storm drains and pipes of debris left from this weekends rains, but there's little to do but watch and wait. Paula Norris hopes Mother Nature will be kind to Colquitt County allowing her business to remain open this week.

"I just pray that it doesn't get too bad and come inside is our main thing because then you lose all your food and stuff because of electricity," Norris said.

Over the weekend a portion of Highway 133 near the county line was under water. They haven't taken those signs down in anticipation of more rainfall and trouble and you don't have to go far to find it. You can see the drainage ditches are still full, so any more water will likely gather that much quicker.

Public works crews were working to clear areas like Third Avenue Southeast where flood waters from this weekend deposited leaves and other debris. Public works crews say this weekend it was streams and creeks overflowing their banks along with storm water drains backing up that caused a problem and they haven't had much time to recover since then.

Both the county and the city of Moultrie are making sand bags available for residents. Emergency officials say if you received some water on Saturday cutting off your road, or coming into your home, you should expect the same conditions for tonight and evacuate earlier rather than later.

Colquitt County Emergency Management Officials expect another possible four to six inches of rain Thursday which could cause more localized flooding and road closures.

The Colquitt Co. EMA tells residents not to travel unless necessary and obey all detour and road closure signs. Shelters will be opened on an "as needed basis" closest to the effected areas. Please contact the EMA office at 229-616-7417 for the location and opening time of a shelter.


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