ALBANY, GA (WALB) -
20 years ago, the city of Albany was hours away from being inundated with rising flood waters. The Flint River was swelling ahead of a 500 year flood that would devastate the city.
It was June 30, 1994 when storms rolled in within days swallowed the city of Albany. Tropical storm Alberto covered over 200 miles, killing 31 people and leaving hundreds homeless.
The constant downpour of rain collected quickly and began flooding streets, homes were eaten away, creeks and dams gave out, even bridges were out of sight. 175 roads in 30 counties had to be shut down, residents were evacuated.
In 48 hours those in Sumter County recorded two feet of rain, almost everything in the city had been lost or damaged.
Over $500 million was needed to get the city back on its feet, and President Bill Clinton flew into Albany and declared it as a Federal Disaster Area. The Flood of 1994 made national headlines and got the attention of our nation's leaders. President Clinton flew into Southwest Georgia Regional Airport on July 13th with the FEMA director and several top members of his administration. The president toured flooded areas by helicopter. He also visited a shelter in Albany and talked with flood victims applying for government help at a Disaster Assistance Center.
WALB news team has spoken to a few residents who remember that day, and even two decades later it hasn't become any easier.
Tuesday evening at 6:00, we will air a special half hour show completely dedicated to the flood of ‘94.
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