Record rains in Tennessee leaves 4 dead


Heavy rains across Tennessee flooded homes and roads, prompting officials to rescue dozens of people from houses, apartments and vehicles. Authorities said four bodies were found Sunday in the flood’s aftermath.

A flash flood emergency was declared overnight by the National Weather Service in Nashville for the city, as well as Brentwood, Franklin and Mt. Juliet.

“Major flash flooding is occurring with numerous roads, interstates, and homes flooded with water rescues ongoing!” the agency tweeted. “Please stay home and do not travel!”

The Nashville Fire Department said it rescued at least 130 people from cars, apartments and homes, while about 40 dogs were moved from a Nashville boarding kennel, Camp Bow Wow, to another location. To the south in Williamson County, over 34 swift water rescues were carried out, said county EMA Director Todd Horton during a media briefing. As many as 18 homes in one neighborhood had to be evacuated.

A portion of Interstate 40 was temporarily shut down due to high water that stranded a vehicle and its driver. The driver was able to get out of the vehicle and to safety, the Tennessee Highway Patrol in Nashville tweeted.

Metropolitan Nashville Police said on Twitter that the body of a man whose car was submerged in a creek was recovered Sunday. In a separate incident, another man’s body was found on a golf course, and police said it’s believed he tried to get out of a car that ran off a road into a culvert before being swept away by high water.

Police later said the bodies of a male and female were found in a wooded area near a Nashville homeless camp.

Nashville recorded 5.75 inches (14.6 centimeters) of rain Saturday, the weather service said, setting a new record for the most rainfall in the city on a March day. It was also the fourth-wettest day in the city’s history. Almost another inch of rain fell after midnight.

Ebony Northern said heavy rain started pouring around midnight and a normally tame creek running through her Nashville apartment complex swiftly rose. Within an hour or so, she could see some first-floor units in other parts of the complex being flooded. She said people evacuated to the second floor and she also heard calls for boats come in over the fire department scanner.

“The units are a mess. Some of the outside air conditioning units have floated off,” she said Sunday morning.

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