Heavy rains overnight caused flooding problems in DeKalb County forcing five families from their homes. No one was injured.
Dustin Johnson, Captain of the Smithville-DeKalb County Rescue Squad said the first call came in at around 3 a.m. from central dispatch reporting that someone on Main Street in Dowelltown was caught in their car by rising waters. “By the time we got there that person had made it out of their car and back to the house. But we had to go back later and evacuate them from their home. From there we got another call on County House Road off McMinnville Highway where a family needed to be evacuated from a trailer. Afterwards, we came back to Dowelltown where we helped a total of four families from their homes on West Main Street,” said Johnson.
The Dowelltown United Methodist Church opened it doors to provide shelter to the evacuees and the American Red Cross arrived to offer them assistance.
The local rescue squad and Emergency Management Agency Coordinator Charlie Parker were assisted by members of the TWRA and the Warren, Smith, and White County Rescue Squads who were called to provide mutual aid support. Although there were no home evacuations in Liberty, at least three vehicles were caught in the flood waters.
“According to the National Weather Service DeKalb County had from 4-6 inches of rain in just a few short hours,” said EMA Coordinator Parker. “Many county roads were impassable and there was street flooding in the Smithville area and on Highway 56 south. Members of the sheriff’s department, EMS, Smithville Police Department, local firefighters, county highway department and TDOT crews either came out or were available to provide assistance if needed. Although the water is now receding there are still some problem areas especially on county roads at Temperance Hall, Hickman, and Dowelltown along Smith Fork Creek,” said Parker.
Parker advises motorists to continue to exercise caution.