MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Cindy weakened to a tropical depression Thursday but still brought heavy rain, powerful winds and the threat of floods to the south.
Here in Memphis, first responders had their hands full as Cindy moved in Friday morning.
During rush hour alone, the heavy rain and strong wind gusts caused several crashes in Memphis:
- I-55/ Brooks Road
- I-240/Lamar Avenue
- I-55/ Mallory
- I-40/ Chelsea
- Singleton Parkway/Egypt Central Road
- Highland/ Waynoka
- Holmes/ Riverdale
- Highway 385/ The Fisherville exit
Tragically, another accident at Getwell and Kimball proved fatal after a driver went off the road and hit a pole.
The storm may also be to blame for a number of house fires around the city Friday morning.
In the Crosstown area, authorities said a lightning strike may have caused a fire on Garland.
Just a block away, an AC unit in the attic caught fire, damaging a house on McNeil Street.
We were told at one point the fire department was working five fires across town.
Friday morning more than 10,000 MLGW customers were without power. The majority of those impacted appeared to be inside the I-240 loop.
In Arkansas, leaders were forced to shutdown State Highway 44 and State Highway 1 due to flooding.
In Alabama, an EF2 tornado damaged buildings in Fairfield, a town outside Birmingham, CNN affiliate WVTM-TV reported. Four people were taken to the hospital with what appeared to be minor injuries, the station said.
A 10-year-old boy from Missouri died Wednesday after a log struck him outside a beachfront condo in Fort Morgan, Alabama, the Baldwin County Sheriff’s Office said.
“The boy’s father was outside but several feet away attending other children and noticed a huge wave was coming ashore heading toward the log and his son,” Capt. S.K. Arthur said in a statement. “The wave hit the log knocking the log into and over his son.”
In coastal Hancock County, Mississippi, more than 300 streets were flooded, CNN affiliate WVUE-TV in New Orleans reported, citing emergency management officials. One resident said he’d been riding his boat through the streets.
“This is definitely the worst I’ve seen it so far. I had probably about (2 feet) of water,” Jerry Rodriquez told WVUE. “If you live on the water, though, that’s what’s going to happen. You’re gonna flood.”
Parts of southern Alabama, southern Mississippi, southeastern Louisiana and western portions of the Florida Panhandle already have seen streets covered in up to 3 feet of water.
To reduce the chances of flash flooding, the Tennessee Valley Authority lowered levels in nine lakes, the agency said. The lakes are Fort Loudoun, Watts Bar, Chickamauga, Nickajack, Guntersville, Wheeler, Wilson, Pickwick and Kentucky.
In Texas, the Coast Guard reported rescuing a shrimp trawler with a crew of four that was taking on water about 80 miles outside Galveston. A helicopter crew lowered a pump to the ship, which the trawler crew used to keep the boat from sinking, the Coast Guard said. The ship made it safely to port Wednesday morning.
Cindy is the second tropical storm to form during the Atlantic hurricane season, which began June 1. It’s the third storm of the season, which got an early start with Tropical Storm Arlene in April.