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jent103 May 2nd, 2010 06:55 AM

Don't Come to Nashville (right now)
In case you're planning a trip here soon and haven't heard - Nashville is experiencing some MAJOR flooding right now. Parts of I-24, I-40, I-440 and I-65 are either impassable or officially closed. Many, many roads are flooded all over town and surrounding counties. Some of you might have seen the video on CNN of the portable classroom floating down the interstate. We're getting more rain today. The news just said that emergency services are *currently* working on sixty rescues - not to mention ones they've already completed. If you don't have to be here, postpone your trip. We'd love to have you, but not right now!

jent103 May 3rd, 2010 04:31 AM

Just an update. The rains have stopped, but things are very bad in several areas. The Opryland Hotel has been evacuated and is experiencing flooding, as is the Opry House. The Cumberland River is still rising (and will be for much of the day today), so much of First and Second Avenues and Lower Broadway have been evacuated as well. This is where a lot of the tourist activity is - honky-tonks, Hard Rock, clubs, etc. I heard on the news that I-40 is closed between west Nashville and Waverly (about 50 miles), but haven't been able to confirm that on TDOT's site. The mayor has asked people to stay put for today so emergency and cleanup crews can reach problem areas. Several suburbs had to be evacuated by boat.

The worst hit areas are several of the suburbs, the Opryland area and now downtown, depending on how high the Cumberland gets today. If you were planning to come to town this week, check with your hotel, family/friends, etc and be cautious. If possible, I would postpone your plans.

This video has been making the rounds. It's truly incredible. We got over 13 inches of rain in two days.

musicfan May 3rd, 2010 06:45 AM

I was there this weekend to see Jimmy Buffett Saturday night. The rain was absolutely incredible...I don't have the words to describe it. I was able to get home yestereday afternoon, just in time, as incoming and outgoing flights were cancelled not long after. I feel so sorry for everyone there.

jent103 May 3rd, 2010 09:16 AM

musicfan, I'm glad you got out okay! The rain yesterday was even worse, believe it or not. Bellevue, a suburb west of town, is half under water, it seems. The helicopter pictures are incredible. A house exploded last night in Franklin.

FYI for anyone coming: Davidson County (Nashville) is under water conservation orders. One of the two treatment plants is completely flooded and they haven't yet been able to assess the damage. Also, if you plan to arrive via I-40 from the west, you will need to detour.

And a little levity (I know we've needed it): It's Nashville, so you know somebody wrote a song.

KissyPants May 3rd, 2010 12:05 PM

My husband is supposed to fly into Nashville and drive to Smithville tomorrow night for a business meeting, and fly back out of Nashville on Wednesday. Will he be able to make it or should he reschedule?

jent103 May 3rd, 2010 12:54 PM

KissyPants, I think he ought to be fine - the airport hasn't been on the news much, and judging by the flight statuses on the web site, things are all right there. Driving to Smithville shouldn't be a major problem either as far as I know, though he might want to confirm that with the people he's meeting with. According to the TDOT map, he may need to take an alternate route - part of I-40 is flooded at the Alexandria exit, so he may need to get off at Watertown. You can check the map here.

musicfan May 3rd, 2010 12:56 PM

OMG--I just looked at the photo series on The Tennessean's website...places where I walked just 48 hours ago are under water! Unbelievable! And the footage and photos of the Opryland hotel are just unreal.

LoveItaly May 3rd, 2010 01:52 PM

Oh jent, the video by Seth Jones is precious, love his ability to immediately write a song!

Good wishes to all of you from Northern California. Stay dry hopefully and take good care.

jent103 May 3rd, 2010 04:43 PM

LoveItaly, isn't it great? I'm sure there were many more doing the same thing. We have an abundance of stocking-hat wearing men with facial hair who write songs and play the guitar. ;)

Gaylord is now saying the Opryland Hotel could be closed anywhere from one to several months.

Downtown the river is still rising - it's expected to crest very soon. Good news, though: The Ryman is still okay - they're actually holding a concert there tonight. The Schermerhorn symphony center and Country Music Hall of Fame have lots of water in their basements, but main floors are expected to be okay.

PamT May 3rd, 2010 05:59 PM

My husband flew into Nashville last night. His flight from Detroit was originally cancelled but he managed to get on another arriving later last night. He had to drive to Gallatin and didn't arrive at his hotel until after 1:30 this morning. He said he ran into two roadblocks where the roads were closed due to roads being under water. He woke up to the sound of pumps running this morning! He will be staying downtown Nashville on Thursday night at the Hampton Inn - if they're not under water!

The pictures on CNN and the weather channel are unbelievable! We've been to many of the places that are now under water - so sad!

Our thoughts and prayers are with you jent103 and musicfan. Stay safe (and dry)! PamT

jent103 May 3rd, 2010 07:42 PM

PamT, so glad your husband is safe!

The Opry House is flooded as well now. Fortunately the river crested a couple hours ago, so hopefully the worst flooding is finished and it's up from here.

Opry House -

PamT May 4th, 2010 05:52 AM

Breaks my heart to see the Opry under water like that! Thanks for keeping us updated jent103!

jent103 May 4th, 2010 06:45 AM

PamT, I just got on to tell you - the Hampton Inn downtown is closed. Much of downtown actually lost power overnight and it may be out for several days (apparently the problem is underground, so they can't get to it until the water recedes). There are many relatively unaffected areas of town, though - if your husband is still planning to come to the city, he should be able to stay somewhere else. If you know where he will be working, I can try to give you some ideas. The closest area outside downtown would probably be the Vanderbilt/West End area; I work at Vandy and we still have full power, roads are clear.

Good news - our remaining water treatment plant avoided flooding. By 0.64 feet!

PamT May 4th, 2010 07:00 AM

Wow! Thanks for the info jent103. I'll be sure to text him and let him know about the Hampton Inn. He usually stays there on Thurs night because it's closer to the airport for his flight home on Friday late am.

We'll keep our fingers crossed for the remaining water treatment plant!

Brian_in_Charlotte May 4th, 2010 07:03 AM

There are 2 Hampton Inns in the Vandy/West End area. Perhaps they are walking reservations to those.

jent103 May 4th, 2010 07:12 AM

If the only reason he stays there is to be closer to BNA, he might also check out the airport area - as far as I know the area around the airport is all right.

I think the plant is okay. The river is receding! Hopefully they can get the second one back up and running soon.

PamT May 4th, 2010 07:13 AM

Actually I just texted him and he said he called the Hampton Inn this morning and they said they were open??? He thought maybe it was the Hilton that was closed?

jent103 May 4th, 2010 07:26 AM

Really? Interesting. Their web site says they're closed - I checked before I posted. Well, I don't know then!

PamT May 4th, 2010 07:41 AM

Well, that sure is strange - I'll have him call again tomorrow to double check. Thanks for your help though!!

jent103 May 4th, 2010 10:02 AM

PamT, our paper now says that power is currently out between First and Fifth Avenues between Demonbreun and Commerce. The Hampton Inn is just barely out of that range, so maybe they meant that they're hoping to reopen by the time he would be there. It might be a little more difficult than usual to get to the hotel, but water is receding downtown.

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