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All About the Nashville Flood

Thinsg you don't see everyday: Sandbagging at our local Publix

Many of you know I live in Nashville. We can’t get any national news coverage because from Saturday until today the local news has been the only thing on ABC, NBC and CBS. I don’t know if you’ve seen it on the news where you live, but Tennessee had two solid days of torrential rains which has resulted in a history-making flood that has claimed 11 lives.

My neighborhood fared pretty well. Neighborhoods and streets around us, though, are a mess. Getting around (for those who dare to venture out; they’re asking people only to make necessary trips) is a nightmare. Roads are flooded out everywhere, turning navigating into more of a maze challenge than anything. (Lots of turning around and going back to try and find a clear route.)

I felt compelled to write because I wanted to chronicle what I’m seeing and hearing. I’ve lived through blizzards, hurricanes, tornadoes, but this is my first flood –and what a flood it is!

And it’s impacting all sorts of things. For locals it’s one thing, but imagine being a tourist. There are literally thousands of them that have now been effected because nothing’s been spared –not hotels, car rentals, roads, or the airport.

  • Traveling on the interstates has become a test of patience. I-65 and I-24 are both reopened. A stretch of I-40 is still closed. (This is causing all sorts of problems in the Bellevue area and heading West out of town, or for those trying to head East into town.)
  • Southwest canceled all flights yesterday. Today they’ll be busy finding people seats on other flights.
  • Guests at the Opryland Hotel were evacuated last night as a precautionary measure. Good move. It ended up flooding and then to add insult to injury suffered a gas break.
  • The Grand Ole Opry and Opry Mills (a big mall that’s right next door to the Grand Ole Opry) are flooded. Both are tourist hot spots.
  • Flood waters unexpectedly surrounded a Days Inn and Wyndam on Music Valley Drive and trapped guests today. Anyone with a boat to lend has been called on to help with water rescues.
  • The Cumberland along Downtown Nashville has flooded businesses (restaurants and bars) along the Riverfront. (Another tourist hot spot because that’s where the honky tonks are.)
  • Travelers are trying to get out of town to other towns like Knoxville or Birmingham to catch flights.
  • Davidson County (which includes Nashville) has asked residents to conserve water until they can get the second water treatment facility back up and running. Drinking water and food prep okay, but no irrigation, car washing, etc.
  • Due to the Harpeth River flooding there’s only two roads (Hwy 96 and Mack Hatcher) open in and out of Franklin, a historic town south of Nashville where Civil War sites like the Carter House and the Carnton Plantation are.
  • MTA has suspended all bus service and Nashville STAR service indefinitely.
  • Visit for a list of road closures.


I’m kind of a stat nut. Here’s the numbers the news has reported this morning for the amount of rain we received this weekend:

  • We received 13.53″ of rain this weekend
  • That’s 28% of our yearly average
  • 12.92 is a May, Jun, July 3 month rainfall average (so in two days we received more than we get on average in three months!)
  • Wettest May on record (doubled last 2 day rainfall record)


Since the dam system was built in the 1960s, the Cumberland River has never been this high. The last time it was this severe was the big flood in the late 1930s. I couldn’t believe some of the numbers I’ve been seeing. I wanted to document what was reported on the news this morning.

The Cumberland at Carthage

  • Up to 45.2 ft presently
  • Cresting at 48.7
  • Estimated to fall below flood stage (40 ft) on Tuesday

Cumberland at Clarksville

  • Currently 50.9 ft
  • Cresting to 51.5 ft
  • To fall below flood stage (46 ft) by Wednesday

Duck river at Centerville (This is in Hickman County which has been DEVASTATED)

  • 44 ft now
  • Already crested and falling
  • Flood stage is 22 ft…so it DOUBLED its flood stage and will hopefully fall soon to give people in this area relief


  • Want to volunteer time or special skills, materials or resources? Hands on Nashville is coordinating volunteer efforts. Use their online form to sign up.
  • You can also make monetary donations to the Nashville Red Cross or This money will be used locally to help with disaster relief efforts.


If you type in “Nashville Flooding” on YouTube you’ll find a bunch of videos from all of the cars, houses, and roads that have been absolutely swamped. I chose a few to share with you. The first two are of I-24 and how they turned into rivers and forced drivers to abandon their cars and flee to higher ground. The last one is one I took yesterday of our local Publix, a grocery store, by our house. There is normally NO water near there, just grass, roads and parking lots.

Courtney Mroch
Courtney Mroch, otherwise known as HJ's Ambassador of Dark and Paranormal Tourism, is an author, traveler, and ghost enthusiast. When she's not writing, jaunting, or planning her next trip, it's a safe bet you'll find her in one of three places: on a tennis court somewhere, on a yoga mat somewhere, or watching a horror movie somewhere. She currently resides in Nashville, Tennessee.

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7 thoughts on “All About the Nashville Flood

  1. I sure wish we had a national canal system to just run your water our way. I can’t imagine that! Good thing you’re well located and didn’t flood. What a soggy mess for a long time and just in time for warm weather and mosquitoes. It’s like a horror movie. Do you think HAARP had a little hand in it? Hmm… We need to pass that to the conspiracy dudes to consider. Glad you’re okay.

  2. We’re in Hickman county now. Evacuated Saturday from Brushy area and at a motel in Centerville. Unable to get back to our yet. Main bridge through town still not open. FEMA not declared yet, just found this out by calling them as just getting sporatic cell & internet abilities. Local Red Cross doing wonders but waiting for National Red Cross to come in. LOL Hoping the world knows we are here as no TV for us yet and just now getting bits of info by surfing now. Had no idea this was so wide spread. Hoping all out there are hanging in, counting Blessings and making it through!

  3. Autumnforest, a canal system would be AWESOME! Sure would be nice to have a way to divert waters to other places that need it when other places get too much.

    Tiffney: Local news was concerned over the weekend because it became clear they’d lost touch with Hickman county. No one was sure how you all were doing there. Yesterday I started to see some of the pictures coming out of there…not good. You guys really got hit. Sounds like you’re hanging tough and are a-okay. That’s really good news. Hope it’ll be the same story for your neighbors out there too. We’ve had some kind of crazy weather this year haven’t we? Think we could do without it though!

  4. Has anybody heard if the Days Inn suffered any damage? I’m supposed to stay there in June for CMA fest.

  5. Which Days Inn is it? If it’s Downtown I think you’re okay. If it’s by Opryland you might want to double check. (But if they haven’t contacted you that could be a very good sign they’re a-okay. Other hotels are contacting guests to let them know they can’t honor their reservations.)

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