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Florence closes McFarland Park Campground in preparation of possible flooding

At least seven campers have been evacuated in preparation for possible flooding.

Posted: Feb 18, 2019 1:54 PM
Updated: Feb 18, 2019 6:38 PM

Shoals portions of the Tennessee River are expected to be at flood stage later this week. According to TVA, flood stage is anything above 370ft, the river is expected to crest Sunday February 24th at 390ft.

Due to the potential of flooding, Florence city officials decided Monday to close the McFarland Park Campground along the river. Seven campground goers have been asked to evacuate by Monday night.

"They told us today we had to evacuate out because of the water and it's going to flood here," said Gary Redford, who was packing up his RV and was about to leave the McFarland Park Campground. "It's kind of a big ordeal to move this thing. It probably takes about two hours to prepare it to leave."

Redford, who originally lives in Ohio, said he spends his winters in McFarland Park to escape the weather but that plan has been thwarted by record rainfall in North Alabama, this is is fourth time to evacuate McFarland Park because of potential flooding.

"I'm from Ohio so I come and spend my winter in this park to keep out o the weather up North. It's not just unhooking the stuff you gotta go through your RV and pack everything up and make sure it doesn't fall or slide around," said Redford.

He says thankfully he has family in Florence and plans on taking his RV there. Redford said he doesn't mind having to evacuate and said it's better to be safe than sorry.

"I'd rather leave than lose my RV," said Redford.

Park officials will meet with Lauderdale County Emergency Management officials on Wednesday and make a decision on closing the entire park.

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