COVINGTON — Residents of an RV park along the Yellow River in Newton County were cautioned Wednesday that the river could overflow its banks by Thursday morning, causing flooding in the park.

Newton County Emergency Manager Jody Nolan issued a statement Wednesday morning advising that the RVs in the flood prone area of Riverside Estates RV Park should be moved to higher ground.

According to Nolan, due to heavy rainfall throughout Tuesday, the National Weather Service is predicting that the Yellow River will crest at 14 feet by 10 a.m. Thursday, although it could occur earlier.

This is the second time this month that residents of the RV park have been advised to leave the area due to the risk of flooding. Several people had to be rescued on Feb. 7 after they apparently ignored an evacuation order.

The NWS has also issued a flood warning for the Yellow River near Conyers below Milstead from Wednesday afternoon until late Thursday night. As of 11 p.m. Tuesday the river was at 6.4 feet; flood stage is 11 feet. The NWS said the river is forecast to rise above flood stage by early Thursday morning and then fall below flood stage by Thursday before midnight. Minor flooding is expected to occur at 13 feet.

In Rockdale County, minor flooding is predicted along the river upstream and downstream from the gauge on Gees Mill Road.

In Newton, most of Sockwell Road will likely be flooded with up to 4 feet of water.

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I have been editor of the Rockdale Citizen since 1996 and editor of the Newton Citizen since it began publication in 2004. I am also currently executive editor of the Clayton News Daily, Henry Daily Herald and Jackson Progress-Argus.

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Flooding has been an issue at this Park for decades. Yesterday a notice was distributed throughout the Park by the management as well as by Newton Cty Board of Commissioners. The Notice by the Board came in the form of a "Notice of Violation"; a threat of being cited for a violation if occupants (many of whom are Seniors on a fixed income and Long term residents) did not move their Camper/RV by 9 a.m. 02/20/20; less than 24 hrs notice to move. (The notice was also distributed to areas which are not prone to flooding).

WHY has the County knowingly allowed the Park to rent spaces to long term renters who invest time & money in their lots in an obviously dangerous zone and then Threaten the PEOPLE with a Citation instead of making the PARK responsible for addressing the issue. There is only a 3' wall (approx) along the perimeter of the always problematic Flood zone. This is woefully insufficient.

It appears to me, the Board of Commissioners sent a CYA Notice and in doing so "targeted" the wrong Party.

Here's a little Free advice for the Board..Don't wait until there's an emergency to do your Job. The Renters are Not at Fault here...YOU ARE for not addressing this longstanding issue with Park Management!! This is on YOU!

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