WAVERLY, Tenn. (WTVF) — Heavy rainfall on Saturday morning has led to severe flooding in parts of Middle Tennessee. Ten people in Humphreys County were killed. Sheriff Chris Davis said at least 20 people are still missing.
Several areas west of Nashville have experienced 10 to 12 inches of rainfall during a six-hour span of time. Dickson, Humphreys and Hickman County have seen the most severe flooding. The Tennessee Emergency Management Agency has issued a state of emergency in response.
TEMA has opened shelters in Dickson, Hickman and Humphreys counties:
- Waverly Church of Christ - 438 West Main Street, Waverly, Tennessee
- YMCA of Dickson County - 225 Henslee Drive, Dickson, Tennessee
- First Baptist Church - 300 E. Main Street, Waverly, Tennessee
- Fairfield Church of Christ - 1860 TN-100, Centerville, Tennessee
The Humphreys County Sheriff's Office has set up a reunification center at McEwen High School. Anyone with missing person information or looking for a loved one is asked to meet at the school. The sheriff's office will have someone at the school until 10 p.m. on Saturday and will start back at 7 a.m. on Sunday.
The situation prompted the National Weather Service to issue a Flash Flood Emergency for portions of Houston, Humphreys, Dickson and Hickman County until 12:45 p.m. A Flash Flood Emergency is only issued in rare situations where heavy rain leads to a severe threat to human life and damage.
Watch: Sky 5 flies over Humphreys County
The National Weather Service reports there have been numerous calls for water rescues and road closures amid an "incredibly dangerous flooding situation" in those counties. Three Tennessee Helicopter Aquatic Rescue Team crews have been deployed to Humphreys County to assist with ongoing water rescue efforts. The Nashville Office of Emergency Management is also sending four swift-water rescue teams to assist.
The National Weather Service called the flooding in Humphreys County a "very dire situation" on Saturday morning. Humphreys County officials said the flooding is so severe, the city of Waverly was only accessible by boat. Officials said in some places, there was 8 feet of water around the city. The water began to recede by Saturday evening.
The county's 911 system was interrupted after the call center was flooded. The flooding has also caused outages to the cell phone service in Humphreys County.
The heavy rain caused Waverly Elementary School to flood. School officials said there was at least 4 feet of water in the entire school.
Waverly residents have been asked to boil their water before drinking or using it for cooking. The Waverly Department of Public Safety issued a boil advisory until the water system can be properly restored. An 8 p.m. curfew is also in place for the city of Waverly. Officials are asking for everyone to stay off the roads to allow emergency operations to continue.
In Dickson County, Highway 48 near Jones Creek, Turkey Creek Road and areas around Garners Creek all experienced flash flooding. U.S. 70 in Waverly is also closed.
Floodwater took over parts of Interstate 40, causing the Tennessee Highway Patrol to temporarily shut down the interstate in both directions near the 153 mile marker. The roadway has since reopened.
As of 5 p.m., there are about 4,200 customers without power, the bulk of which are in Humphreys County.