City prepares for heavy rain, flash floods; Street Department clears drains, preps sandbags


Clarksville Street Department workers were busy Wednesday preparing for possible heavy rains and flash flooding as the remnants of Hurricane Harvey begin to push across Middle Tennessee.

The National Weather Service said Clarksville and the region could expect rains to begin Wednesday night and intensify through Friday, with totals expected to reach between 6 to 8 inches by Friday night. NWS issued a Flash Flood Watch  for Clarksville and Montgomery County and most of Middle Tennessee from 7 a.m. Thursday through 7 p.m. Friday.

If heavy rain falls, it could create flooding along streams, creeks and rivers in Clarksville, and along low-lying roadways throughout the community.

“We are taking every possible precaution to reduce the impact of rising water on City systems and structures,” Mayor Kim McMillan said Wednesday. “And I urge everyone to heed the flash flood watch and be safe during this period of heavy rainfall.”

As a precaution, Clarksville Street Department personnel began clearing storm drains across the City Wednesday, while other crews prepared sandbags for placement in areas that often see flooding during times of heavy rain.

Clarksville Police urged motorists to be careful during times of heavy rainfall and flash flooding, and offered these tips from the federal Department of Homeland Security:

  • Avoid walking or driving through flood waters.
  • Do not drive over bridges that are over fast-moving floodwaters.
  • Just 6 inches of moving water can knock you down, and one foot of moving water can sweep your vehicle away.
  • If there is a chance of flash flooding, move immediately to higher ground.
  • If floodwaters rise around your car but the water is not moving, abandon the car and move to higher ground. But do not leave the car and enter moving water.
  • Avoid camping or parking along streams, rivers, and creeks during heavy rainfall. These areas can flood quickly and with little warning.

About Author

Christine Anne Piesyk has been a journalist for more than 50 years. Her credits include positions as Editor in Chief, Managing Editor, Staff Writer specializing in education, leisure living, food and arts and entertainment. She was co-producer, writer and on air persona for the Entertainment Review for 25 years. Now "retired," she finds herself working on online websites and as a book editor. In her other life, she is a costume designer in her daughter's company, Gemini Dream Designs.

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