- Several people were still unaccounted for.
- The floodwaters decimated some communities.
- The hardest hit areas were about 40 miles west of Nashville.
The death has risen to 15 in catastrophic flooding that devastated portions of Middle Tennessee Saturday.
FIve additional deaths were reported by the sheriff in Humphreys County on Sunday morning, adding the 10 confirmed Saturday night. About 30 people remained missing, the sheriff said. The area is about 45 miles west of Nashville.
The flooding from torrential rainfall trapped residents in their homes, closed highways and prompted multiple water rescues Saturday morning.
Photos showed widespread damage after the floodwaters receded.
People took to their roofs and attics to escape the floodwaters and await rescue. Homes were swept away and communities destroyed.
Residents recounted stories of being trapped for hours.
“Hell. That’s what we had to go through,” Cindy Dunn, who lives in the Humphreys County town of Waverly, told The Tennessean after she and her husband were rescued from their attic.
The couple had holed up there to escape the rising waters. They were rescued by a crew who raised a bulldozer bucket to their attic window.
They lost everything to the flash flooding.
“My husband said one minute he was (watching TV news) and the next minute we had no garage,” Dunn said.
Earlier, officials described dire circumstances in communities in the western portion of Middle Tennessee.
“People are trapped in their homes and have no way to get out. Water is up to their necks. It is catastrophic, the worst kind of situation,” Krissy Hurley, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Nashville, told The Tennessean of the flooding in Humphreys County, where Waverly is located.
The Tennessee National Guard deployed soldiers and airmen to the area in response to the flooding. Three helicopter aquatic rescue teams from the state as well as swift water rescue teams from Nashville also sent to assist.
Several people were missing in nearby Hickman County. Cell service was knocked out in both counties and flooding closed a large portion of Interstate 40.
Humphreys County lost 911 service.
The fire department in Dickson, about 35 miles west of Nashville, started responding to calls for help before sunrise Saturday.
Several residents were also trapped in their homes there.
The NWS declared a flash flood emergency and tweeted that this was “an incredibly active flash flood situation” with 15 to 17 inches of rain reported in 24 hours in areas around Dickson, Houston, Humphreys and Hickman counties.
Some of those amounts are equal to 25% of the normal rainfall for the entire year, the NWS added.
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