In preparation for an ever-increasing amount of rainfall and flooding in several areas of the city and county, the City of Murfreesboro activated the Emergency Operations Center (EOC), located at the Murfreesboro Police Department Headquarters, beginning at 9:30 Wednesday morning.
EOC activation allows for a more rapid deployment of resources during significant weather events.
The National Weather Service (NWS) has issued an area flood warning for Rutherford County until 12:00 pm CST. A flood warning means that rivers or stream flows are elevated, or ponding water in urban or other areas is imminent.
According to the United States Geological Survey gauge located on the east fork of the Stones River at Betty Ford Road, as of 8:00 a.m. Murfreesboro has received approximately 3.5 inches of rainfall in the last 72 hours. Additional rainfall is expected through Saturday night, with only a few reprieves.
Citizens and visitors of Murfreesboro are urged to be cautious in areas of high and, in particular, flowing waters. “The old adage ‘Turn Around Don’t Drown’ sounds silly, but in truth, it’s very serious,” said Fire Rescue Chief Mark Foulks. “Even the smallest amounts of ponding and flooding waters can sweep vehicles off of the road.” The NWS reports that most flood deaths occur in vehicles. If you encounter a road that is submerged, turn around and take an alternative route.
Foulks also reminds “thrill seekers” that it is dangerous to play on or around the low head dams during and even following heavy rainfall. “We also caution people to stay away from flooded Greenway areas, as water may have crossed over some of those pathways,” he added.
To report high water or drainage systems that may be malfunctioning, or flooded roads within the city limits of Murfreesboro, you are urged to contact the City of Murfreesboro’s Street Department at 615-893-4380. Street Department Director Raymond Hillis said that the department has assigned all employees to clean and check every curb inlet within the city limits. “We also have additional crews prepared to respond and repair and reported problem areas that may cause flooding to street and property dwellings,” said Hillis.
For county roads issues, please notify Rutherford County Emergency Management Agency at 615-898-7764.
Many news outlets are reporting that by the end of the month, this may be the wettest February on record for Nashville and surrounding areas. “Our main objective is to keep you safe,” said Foulks. “Please continue to monitor the weather and head warnings as they arise, and if you find yourself in a water emergency such as a car stalled in high water, call 9-1-1 immediately.”