Though most of the roughly 200 Irma evacuees from Florida have left Talladega Superspeedway, about 60 people in recreational vehicles remain.
Superspeedway public relations director Russell Branham says the facility provided temporary refuge in the form of gravel slots for RVs and grass areas for tents, with water hookups and food.
Having already fled their homes, most of the original evacuees left the Speedway to escape what’s now Tropical Storm Irma, which made landfall in Florida as a powerful hurricane originally predicted to track farther to the east. Instead, it followed the evacuees north-northwest from Florida to Alabama, where as of Monday afternoon, rain and wind was already beginning to pick up.
Branham said a small number of the families saw that things were not as bad as forecasted at their homes, so they headed back south to check for damages, and “just to be home.”
All of the people originally in tents had left the campsites at the Speedway as of Sunday. They’re staying at nearby Eastaboga Baptist Church through Tuesday.
Everything has been free of charge.
“We were glad to help,” says Branham. “We’ve got the property, we’ve got the facilities, so why not do it?”
He says local churches and chambers of commerce also helped by providing and grilling food at the Speedway.