Campsites in Alabama react to flooding tragedy in Arkansas

Posted by: Mario Hendricks - bio | email

MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - WSFA 12 News investigated to see if what happened in Arkansas could happen here.

We've seen our share of flooding here in Alabama and we also have several parks popular with campers.

It's the serene setting that draws campers like Richard and Brenda Grey to Fort Toulouse.

"It's so peaceful."

The Grays have come here often over the last 20 years and they look forward to another peaceful weekend at the park.

The same plans they imagine families in Arkansas had before chaos erupted.

"You don't think about that out here. you come here to's terrible," stated Richard Gray.

Site Director Jim Parker started working at Fort Toulouse more than 30 years ago.

"I've seen it flood everywhere."

But he has never seen a situation as severe as the one in Arkansas and doesn't believe it would ever happen or at any of Alabama's state parks.

When asked about the likelihood of it flooding at Fort Toulouse, Parker stated that he wouldn't want to be there when it happened. "It would be biblical proportions," he added.

The camp site where the grays set up their RV is well out of harms way.

At the other end of the park, the ground is lower and it does flood there and that is why they do not have a campsite in that area.

"You have to worry more about lightning and tornadoes...not water," said Mr. Gray.

The Grays say they always keep an eye on the weather but for now, their thoughts are with those in Arkansas.

"we just hope they can recover from this...and the ones who are missing, we hope they find them," added Mr. Gray.

Parker says a big difference between Arkansas and Alabama is the lay of the land. He says that most of the land at Fort Toulouse is flatter which allows water to spread out.

He also says that at Fort Toulouse there are several ways out of the park in case of an emergency which was not the case in Arkansas.

ForT Toulouse has 39 camp sites that have just recently been reopened after renovations.

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