UPDATE: Collapsed retaining wall closes Chimney Rock State Park

North Carolina
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Authorities said that Chimney Rock State Park has closed because a parking lot retaining wall has collapsed.

Officials at Chimney Rock State Park said the wall collapsed Saturday after a week of heavy rain. More rain is expected the next several days as the remnants of Subtropical Storm Alberto pass by the west.

Authorities say visitors should check the park’s website at https://www.chimneyrockpark.com/ to see when it reopens.

Chimney Rock State Park has seen several rock slides in recent years including one on October that closed the park for several weeks.

The park in Rutherford County was set aside more than 100 years ago.
 

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As officials are urging evacuations in parts of the North Carolina mountains, a wall has collapsed near a popular tourist spot.

Chimney Rock State Park is closed until further notice after a collapsed retention wall was discovered Sunday morning.

The collapse happened at the upper parking lot.

Photographs shared by the Chimney Rock State Park showed a significant portion of the parking lot eroded, with concrete barricades between the nearby road and the collapsed parking lot.

The damage will need to be assessed and stabilized before the park would allow any more visitors.

There is no indication at this time when Chimney Rock State Park will be reopened.

Meanwhile, officials in Polk County, where a woman died in a mudslide last week, are recommending voluntary evacuations of some areas as a subtropical storm threatens.  

Officials said that they’re recommending that residents of some vulnerable areas evacuate by 5 p.m. Sunday.

Subtropical Storm Alberto had sustained winds of 40 mph Saturday. Storm conditions are expected to affect the county Sunday night through early this week.
  
An American Red Cross shelter will be open to evacuees beginning at 5 p.m. Sunday at Polk County Middle School in Mill Spring.

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