As Fay continues, Lee couple remembers Flood of '94 - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

As Fay continues, Lee couple remembers Flood of '94

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By Christian Jennings - bio | email

August 19, 2008

LEE COUNTY, GA (WALB) - ]Tropical Storm Fay is creeping closer to south Georgia. The Georgia Emergency Management Agency increased staffing at its State Operations Center and scheduled regular conference calls with local EMA directors in our area to prepare for potential damage. The threat of ten inches of rain has a lot of folks thinking about the floods of 1994 and 1998.

"It didn't just keep creeping up and creeping up and creeping up...it just came in one big swoosh," says Glenna Hatfield as her and her husband drive me around in their go-cart, giving me a tour of their backyard and a glimpse into that dreadful night in July of 1994.

Glenna and Reed Hatfield live in Lee County, right behind Muckalee creek. The big swoosh she's referring to is flash flooding that took over her neighbor's entire house when Muckalee creek flooded.

"It came and got in and around our house and missed by about 3 bricks from getting in the house so we were very fortunate compared to a lot of people," she says remembering the scene.

But just because they weren't hit hard doesn't mean they aren't nervous about what Tropical Storm Fay might do.

"We always listen to the weather and watch the weather patterns, so right now we are watching and listening. Not really anxious, but we're concerned, making sure we've got flash lights, we've got our radio, we have water on hand," says Glenna Hatfield.

The Hatfield's are on fairly high land. Back in '94, most of their yard was flooded but the water spread out across their land, and across the street, into what used to be a patch of woods and lowland. But since that time houses have popped up around the area and that concerns them. The water has no where to go.

"I'm just hoping that we don't get what they're predicting myself," says Mr. Hatfield.

But even though the Hatfields know another flood is a possibility, they seem to think it's unlikely to happen.

"It's going to take a massive amount of rain to do anything to us here, but when it happened last time people said you know they never would have believed it." And now they do. But all residents across South Georgia can do is wait, prepare for the worst, and hope for the best.

Lee County workers cleared out drainage ditches near the Muckalee hoping to make room for runoff and hopefully minimize problems.

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