Flooding impacts local area, damages roads
Meteorologists may have a hard time predicting winter weather across the Cumberland Plateau, but they were spot on in last week’s warnings of flooding across all of Tennessee. Heavy rains began Friday, and before it was over on Saturday night, most areas saw an average of five inches of rainfall. This is in addition to the 10 – 15 inches some areas saw in the days preceding the weekend storms. Over 30 Tennessee counties have reported damage (closed roads, flooded structures, and damages to infrastructure), with 14 counties declaring a local state of emergency (Decatur, Van Buren, Claiborne, Hardin, Maury, Sevier, McNairy, Marshall, Scott, Cheatham, Lincoln, Moore, Overton, and Warren).
In Grundy County, the flooding caused road damage and trapped a family resulting in a water rescue.
“Not since the late 1980s do I remember seeing flooding this severe,” said Grundy County Sheriff Clint Shrum. “At least two roadways experienced washouts. Highway 108 and Highway 56 towards McMinnville were the most severely impacted.”
In Tarleton Valley, at Cove Creek, a woman and her children were rescued after being trapped by flood waters.
“”The Collins River simply flooded faster than the family could evacuate,” explained Sheriff Shrum. “We were very fortunate the Beersheba Springs Rescue Squad had a boat that was available for the rescue.”
Grundy County Mayor Michael Brady said the rainfall was destructive.
“The recent excessive amounts of rain produced very real and dangerous situations in Grundy County,” explained Brady. “I, with other departments, were constantly in contact with state and national services.”
“All of our departments and responders did an exceptional job and we continue to grow in our preparedness,” stated Mayor Brady. “I know that our road department is al-ready producing a plan of action.
“I will be in Nashville the first part of next week to inquire and seek any funds. I know our shared objective is to be prepared and capable during these emergency situations for our beloved Grundy County,” concluded Mayor Brady.
An already impaired Laurel Lake Drive in Monteagle suffered further damage during the heavy rains. The city had a con-tractor onsite Monday to determine how to repair the impassible road and are working with both the county and state to find funding for the repairs. Anyone traveling past Lau-rel Lake must use Wells Road as a detour.