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Heavy rains forced RV park residents to higher ground
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COVINGTON, Ga. – Heavy rains forced several residents at the Riverside Estates Travel Trailer and Mobile Home Park to relocate their homes to higher ground last weekend until the water subsided at the lowest part of the park.

Manager Ryan Howington said the park prepares for inclement weather to keep residents and their belongings safe.

“Typically, we keep an eye on the weather,” he said. “If the weather says it’s going to be raining for several days in a row or really hard for an extended period, we will look up the flood website and we look at the Conyers below Milstead river gauge point that’s at that location.

“There are several flood stages on there. There’s normal, then there’s what they call the action stage which is not a flood, but you should be preparing in case the gauge is off or under in its estimate. Above action, there’s what is called minor flood stage, then moderate, heavy, severe, etc. Whenever it gets into the action stage, we will go ahead and send out notices and have the pumps at the ready. Essentially, we make sure that we’re ready in case something is wrong.”

Howington said the Dec. 8 rains were the worst he’s seen in his year managing the park. He said the intense short period of rain caused the problem.

According to Howington, most of the 20 residents affected by the heavy rains were relocated to higher ground inside the park from their lots next to the Yellow River. He said Riverside Estates is looking at different ways to notify residents of potential problems.

“Whenever a situation like this happens, you sit down and say what did we do, what can we do to serve our customers better,” he said. “I’m investigating right now getting a text messaging emergency messaging in place. Basically, everyone will give us their number and then we’ll send them a text message when the river level is threatening to raise too high.

“We already do give people notices. We print out notices that say it’s about to flood or it might flood and a here’s where you can go if it does and here’s where you can’t. We put that into a waterproof container and we put it onto people’s vehicles or RVs. We did that this weekend.”

Howington said whenever flooding is possible at the park’s lowest part there are places within in the park for people to relocate their homes. He said once the pumps start working, it doesn’t take long to remove the water causing the problem.