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November 10, 2016

State of Emergency in Tennessee from Continued Drought and Wildfire Threats


This evening the Tennessee Emergency Management Agency (TEMA) activated the Tennessee Emergency Management Plan (TEMP) in response to the drought and wildfire impacts, and continued threat, in the State.


There is now a Level 3 – State of Emergency in place for Tennessee, as of 7 p.m., Central, on Thursday, Nov. 10, 2016.


Statement from TEMA Director Patrick Sheehan

“Approximately 302 of Tennessee’s 480 water systems are experiencing some level of drought impact, ranging from moderate to exceptional. At least three counties have requested water for residents whose wells have run completely dry of water.


In the past month, an estimated 6,000 to 6,200 acres have burned due to wildfires in Bledsoe, Hamilton, Monroe, and Sequatchie counties. Currently, there are 53 active fires in Tennessee impacting 9,680 acres. On Wed., Nov. 9, 2016, residents in 10 to 15 homes near the Flippers Bend fire in Hamilton County were evacuated. An additional wildfire in Hamilton County and wildfires in Campbell and Sequatchie counties are also threatening homes and property.


Furthermore, relief from the drought and wildfire threat is not imminent as weather forecasts are not showing any significant precipitation in Tennessee through the remainder of 2016.


The State of Emergency will allow TEMA to engage personnel and resources from our State and Federal partners to be sure we are in a position to respond effectively and quickly to protect lives and property from what is emerging as a prolonged drought and wildfire threat in Tennessee.”


About the Tennessee Emergency Management Agency: TEMA’s mission is to coordinate preparedness, response and recovery from man-made, natural and technological hazards in a professional and efficient manner in concert with our stakeholders. Follow TEMA on Facebook, TNDisasterInfo, on Twitter, @T_E_M_A, and at www.tnema.org.