Two-year study could provide answers on why Waverly flooded

WAVERLY, Tenn. (WTVF) – The federal government is committing thousands of dollars to investigate how and why Trace Creek in Waverly gets so flooded during heavy rains.

Although the 2021 flood was by far the worst in the city’s history, it wasn’t the first time Trace Creek had flooded.

This is why community leaders have commissioned various floodplain studies over the past few years. Now the US Army Corps. of Engineers is on the case.

“You’re going to have a detailed flood assessment of the entire Trace Creek watershed, which has never been done before. So it’s going to take into account the entire basin,” said Thomas Herbert, chief of the Nashville District Plan Formulation Section for the U.S. Army. Body. of Engineers.

Starting next week, Herbert’s team will begin tracing and measuring every bend in Trace Creek, including where it typically floods.

“In the upstream areas where most of the heaviest water fell during the flood, then passed through the city, all the way down Trace Creek to the mouth,” Herbert said.

“There will definitely be many pages in the report,” said Ashley Fuentes, project manager for the Nashville District Project Planning Branch.

But the final report will not only contain raw data, it will also offer potential solutions.

“It would be the technical data that would help people know where some of the best investments might be to reduce the risk of future floods,” Herbert said.

They will look at questions like – should the bridges over Trace Creek be rebuilt? Should the creek be diverted at certain sections?

But such complicated questions will take time to answer. The study can last up to two years.

“They will look at things like waterway chokes, bridge flow chokes and things like that,” Herbert said.

But Thomas hopes that if the study is done well, it can prevent history from repeating itself.

“It was a very big flood that happened and hopefully we can play a part in part of the solution,” he said.

Waverly Mayor Buddy Frazier told NewsChannel 5 that this study will help them better understand why Waverly is flooding and will ultimately make the community safer.

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