Officials: Drivers, Stay Home. No, Seriously

Posted at 4:34 AM, Jan 22, 2016
and last updated 2016-01-23 15:09:40-05

Officials have urged drivers to stay home unless absolutely necessary as roads have come to a halt along many interstates and side roads in Tennessee and Kentucky.

Hundreds of crashes and vehicles off the road have been reported throughout the area. In fact, officials said they have responded to more than 200 crashes throughout the morning and afternoon. Many motorists have been stranded on interstates for hours. 

This is why officials are asking people to stay home: motorists are currently stranded on I-65/I-24 near the Silliman Evans Bridge.

Posted by on Friday, January 22, 2016

Crews with the Tennessee Department of Transportation were unable to treat roads ahead of the snowfall in Nashville due to Thursday's rain. They said any brine/salt mixture they put down would have just washed away. 

“At this point, our task is to get on top of the frozen stuff as soon as possible,” said Kathryn Schulte with TDOT. 

The biggest problem was inbound Interstate 40 on the east side. Traffic was at a standstill leading up to the split with I-24. Vehicles were backed up all the way to the Donelson Pike interchange. 

West and eastbound of I-40 was also at a standstill in Putnam County. Officials reported very little movement on the interstate from Cookeville from Monterrey.

Several people who have made their way into downtown Nashville reported passing dozens of cars on the side of the roadways. 

Officials have advised residents to postpone nonessential travel to another day. 

Metro Nashville Police had reports of over 200 non-injury crashes between 5:30 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. Friday. Only 12 crashes in the county involved injuries. 

Police said injury crashes have been their priority. Drivers involved in fender benders have been advised it could take quite a while for officers to respond. Those drivers should get their cars safely out of the way of traffic and exchange insurance information. 

Nashville Mayor Megan Berry has asked residents to stay home if they didn't need to be out on the roads. 

NES has reported several power outages throughout Davidson County, affecting nearly 2,000 customers. Some stoplights have been without power. Officials have reminded drivers to treat these stoplights as four-way intersections. 

NewsChannel 5 reporter Matthew Torres was enroute to Clarksville Friday morning as traffic came to a standstill. 

According to troopers with the Tennessee Highway Patrol, vehicles continued to slide off the roadway or into vehicles on westbound lanes on I-24.

Icing has already been a problem along the Kentucky-Tennessee state line. Officers have warned drivers to stay off the roads.

“If you’re headed north into Kentucky from the Nashville area, it’s going to be a really, really tough going today,” said Keith Todd with the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet. “We’re looking at wind gusts blowing at 25-35 mph, blowing snow, poor visibility and near blizzard conditions pretty much all day today.”

Icing amounts in Clarksville have been as high as a quarter inch.

THP officials said things will get worse throughout the day before it gets better.

Listed below is a breakdown of conditions by some of our region's counties.


  • West and eastbound of I-40 was also at a standstill in Putnam County from Cookeville from Monterrey.
  • Hwy 111 was passable but slick. Officials said they were orried about temperatures dropping overnight.
  • There were so many drivers stranded on roads, that a Church in Monterrey was placed on standby as a shelter for them.


  • More than 80 accidents reported; 4 people transported to hospital but expected to be okay
  • 30 additional drivers assisted because they'd become stuck in a road or ditch
  • 6 weather-related falls
  • No major roads shut down but many tough to navigate
  • Several shelters on standby if needed


  • 31 West, 25 West and Stop30 in Hendersonville were all closed down because of so many tractor trailers stuck in the roads.
  • Out of the three roads, 31 West was the only highway expected to reopen any time soon. 25 West and Stop30 were expected to be closed for much of the day.
  • No emergency shelters opened yet.


  • Most roads slushy and passable, other than a couple wrecks blocking roads for a short period of time.
  • Can't account for the total number of wrecks because so many drivers have been able to fix the issue themselves and getting home without calling 911. Yet, probably dozens have occurred.
  • No emergency shelters opened yet.