No more rooms in Tifton - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

No more rooms in Tifton

September 3, 2004

Tifton- Even with the large number of hotels in Tifton, evacuees are out of luck if they plan on stopping here.

"Tifton, Tift County has about 1,500 rooms and they have been full for more than a day," says Emergency Management Public Information Officer David Haire.

The same holds true for Tift County R.V. parks.

"We called ahead," says evacuee Delbert Towns.

Amy's South Georgia R.V. park is jammed with Floridians. They've even opened a nearby field for evacuees to park.

"I'm leaving the motor running because we don't know what that thing is going to do," says Towns.

He's prepared to leave Tifton if Frances pounds down on South Georgia, something emergency management officials are hoping others will do anyway.

"What we're really concerned about is the people who have waited until the last moment. They may be the ones that need the shelters," Haire says.

Last-minute evacuees are what Tift County will save their shelters for.

Emergency Management officials say though hotels rooms are gone, gas in Tift County is plentiful. They're even expecting trucks to re-stock stations Saturday morning.

Evacuees flooded so many cities along I-75 that many are now heading west.

G & S Shell station in Sylvester was busy all day. In addition to regular customers, dozens of Floridians unable to find lodging in Tifton stopped to gas up while they hunt for vacant hotels.

"I do have family in Atlanta. I'm from Atlanta originally, so hopefully I can get there, but if not hopefully Albany or Columbus will have something," says Cullen.

Gas station employees say many people who stopped to fill up were planning to head even farther west to Alabama.

Posted at 5:15 PM by elaine.armstrong@walb.com