SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) – Mayor Van Johnson went into more detail Tuesday about why the city decided to clear out the homeless encampment on President St. The mayor says the decision came after he and City Manager Jay Melder toured the area, following a fire there earlier this month. He says they saw lots of combustible items, including propane tanks and gasoline cans, and knew that it was only a matter of time before a more serious fire happened.

Johnson also addressed concerns about more homeless people possibly going downtown, saying “I suspect that the 30 to 40 that were underneath that off ramp are 30 to 40 that will be helped, that now have a place to stay. So, I don’t know that they’ll be moved anywhere, so to speak.”

The mayor says the Savannah-Chatham Authority for the Homeless is working with the city, and local partners, to stop similar encampments from popping up in other areas of the city.