Monday, May 3, 2010

Tenn. officials brace for more flooding, deaths

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Officials in Nashville braced for more deaths Monday as the flooded Cumberland River continued to swell, sending muddy water rushing through neighborhoods and threatening the historic heart of Music City after a destructive line of weekend storms killed 21 people in Tennessee, Mississippi and Kentucky.

Using motor boats and canoes, authorities and volunteers rescued scores of residents trapped in flooded homes, some which looked like islands surround by dark river water. The downtown — home of a historic warehouse district that dates back to the 1800s and is now occupied by bars and restaurants — was nearly deserted after authorities evacuated residents and tourists. Floodwater spilled into some streets near the riverfront, and restaurants and bars in the warehouse district were closed. A few blocks away, the historic Ryman Auditorium, longtime former home of the Grand Ole Opry, was in no immediate danger.
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