Polk County community fears Dorian could bring more flooding issues

Tracking the Tropics

POLK COUNTY, Fla. (WFLA) – Things are already bad in some parts of Tampa Bay with flooding happening over the weekend.

Alongside the Peace River, water is already overflowing on the banks. Residents nearby are afraid if any of the rain from Hurricane Dorian hits this area, their homes will wash away.

For people living in the Peace River Village Mobile Home Community, bracing for Dorian is taken seriously. With wood panels up, sandbags are next as they’re placed on the roof to help it from getting blown off by strong winds.

“It’s no joke. We’re afraid. There are a lot of families out here you can see are afraid of the flooding coming into the houses. It gets from four feet to five feet of water. So it gets real bad,” said Neftali Feliciano who lives in this community.

This is an area that already floods if a strong rain comes through.

“Our kids and the old lady, we’re fixing to go… I booked a room in Bartow four days ago just cause I thought the hurricane was going to hit,” said Jeff Walker who also lives here.

The Peace River is already saturated, overflowing over the weekend.

“That’s regular rain, yeah. So if a hurricane hits we’re screwed out here,” Walker said.

The county says there’s not much that can be done at this point.

“If you’ve had issues before, then you’re going to have issues again. If we get hit by this event whether it’s a tropical storm or a hurricane,” said Jay Jarvis with Polk County.

For those leaving everything they own behind, all they can do is pray.

“Dude, I thought for sure we were going to be underwater last time. It wasn’t so bad, but this one is a lot bigger; a lot worse,” Walker said.

Many of the residents are leaving Monday night. Their real fear right now is any hard and heavy rain that will bring floodwaters that could ruin everything they own.

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