Severe storms and strong winds came through Tennessee on Sunday afternoon, leaving a path of downed trees and power lines throughout Mt. Juliet and beyond. The storms came exactly two months after a deadly tornado cut a path through Middle Tennessee on March 3.
According to the National Weather Service, a complex of severe thunderstorms called a mesoscale convective system (MCS) developed across Kansas on Saturday, then tracked its way east. It made its way through southern Missouri and western Kentucky before reaching Middle Tennessee.
“These storms produced widespread straight-line wind damage across nearly every county of Middle Tennessee, with numerous trees, power lines, and buildings damaged,” said the National Weather Service in an overview of the storms.
Nashville saw winds between 60-80 mph that knocked out power for more than 130,000 customers, the worst power outage on record for the city. The Nashville International Airport measured a peak wind gust of 71 mph, the fifth highest on record at that location.
On Sunday night, more than 22,000 were without power in Mt. Juliet, according to City Manager Kenny Martin. According to MJPD, no injuries or deaths were reported, but many residential structures were damaged and power lines fell across streets, causing several road closures across the city.
City officials said the public works department soon will begin collecting vegetative debris in an “all hands on deck” effort to assist residents in removing debris piles from the roadside.
Vegetative debris must fit within the following criteria to be removed:
- 10-inch round diameter logs or smaller
- Branches and limbs less than 15 feet in length
- Material is placed within 10 feet of the public roadway
- The City will not be able to collect any root balls or logs over 10 inches in diameter
The NWS anticipates that the windstorm will be considered a derecho, a unique form of MCS that causes major wind damage over hundreds of miles. They also said it is likely that Sunday’s storms are the worst straight-line wind event across Middle Tennessee since the July 13, 2004, derecho.
According to NWS, one man was killed and three other people were injured by falling trees.