Many evacuees target Tifton - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Many evacuees target Tifton

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August 13, 2004

Tifton-- Tift County Emergency say the don't anticipate the grid lock that has occurred from evacuees on Interstate 75 during severe weather in the past, but traffic on the major road that run through Tifton's center was bumper to bumper.

Officials there are taking steps to avoid traffic build ups. “Well, you got DOT Involved and you got law enforcement,” said Tifton Fire Chief Mike Flippo. “The media will play a significant role to get the information out, and depending on where the evacuees are coming from, to give them the best route to take.”

The evacuation has created an economic boom for businesses in Tifton, and hotels aren't the only places benefiting from the influx of Floridians trying to escape hurricane Charley's path. Restaurants in Tifton have seen a steady flow of customers.

"We have seen a lot of out of towners," said Zaxby's manager Sylvia Brown. “A lot of people we haven't seen before. Zaxby's is also expecting a big rush over the weekend as evacuees head back home to Florida.

As Evacuees from Florida pour into South Georgia many of them are not alone; they're bringing their pets. Evacuees say as they were looking for places to stay finding hotels and motel that would accept the fury family member was at top of the list.

“This is my neighbor's dog and he is handicapped, and he could not keep him with him, so I told him I would take his with me until I could get back to him,” says evacuee Janet Haynes.

Not every hotel accepts pet or plans to change their rule. For evacuees in Tifton, the Animal Center is prepared to hold animals those who can find a place that will take them and their pet.

posted at 5:00PM by dave.miller@walb.com

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