TDOT, Tennessee Highway Patrol prepare for flooding

Posted: 9:36 PM, Feb 19, 2019
Updated: 2019-02-20 04:03:51Z

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — Flooding could quickly cause dangerous conditions for drivers across Middle Tennessee, and Tennessee Department of Transportation and Tennessee Highway Patrol officials are taking steps to keep roads clear and safe.

TDOT crews started cleaning storm drains last week to help keep roads from flooding. Officials said any kind of debris can clog drains quickly. TDOT also has crews on call ready to respond to help drivers, if needed.

THP troopers will be monitoring roads, and additional troopers will be out patrolling if necessary. Strike teams, which are specially trained troopers with larger vehicles and additional equipment may also be used to respond to emergencies.

Officials recommend drivers be cautious, and slow down. They also need to keep their lights and windshield wipers on at all times. They recommended drivers not try and drive through any road with standing water.

“We can’t stress enough, do not cross the water,” said Lt. Bill Miller with the Tennessee Highway Patrol. “Don’t drive across a roadway that is flooded. Simply turnaround and don’t drown.”

If you see signs up for high water, don’t try it,” said Greg Woerdeman, District Operations Supervisor for TDOT. “It’s very serious. [The signs are up] to alert you to a dangerous condition.”

Lt. Miller said drivers in rural areas may face challenges, as well. Roads may be dark and it may be harder to see the water.

If conditions get really bad, they recommend people avoid driving at all.

If you get stuck on a flooded road and need help, call 911 if it’s an emergency. You can also call *847 on your cell phone and that will connect you with the nearest THP dispatch center.