State agency takes action after flooding traps homeowners

Published: Jul. 12, 2022 at 7:05 PM CDT
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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WSMV) - Following complaints that TDOT’s infrastructure was releasing such floodwaters into yards off Highway 13 in Humphreys County that it was trapping people in their homes, the state agency has brought in massive culverts to better control the water.

The problem was first exposed in a report from WSMV4 Investigates in February.

WSMV4 reporting showed how infrastructure designed to funnel waters away from Highway 13 were being dumped into a creek in front of homes.

But in period of intense storms, the culverts along the creek weren’t large enough to handle the volume of water and backed up, flooded homes.

On June 29, homeowners watched as 5-foot-wide concrete culverts replaced the smaller ones outside their home.

“It’s a big relief to know that if we get a flooding rain it’s more than likely not going to flood us anymore,” said Charles Gilreath, a resident who had been trapped in his home because of the flooding.

News4 Investigates asked TDOT if they intended to replace other culverts in flood prone areas, but a spokeswoman for the agency said the person with knowledge of that was not available by our deadline.

WSMV4 will continue to ask that question, as flood experts have said in interviews that the state’s floodwater mitigation systems are not able to handle storm water brought about by climate change.

The News4 Investigates team takes a look at flooding risks after a catastrophic flood hit Waverly and the changing flood plains map in Nashville.

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