published Wednesday, December 9th, 2009

Chattanooga: Schools, roads closed because of inclement weather

Many schools and roads in the Chattanooga area were closed this morning as the result of storms during the night that led to high waters covering many highways and mud slides in some areas.

Hamilton County Schools were among those closing for the day because of the disruption caused by storms that swept through the region Tuesday night.

The commute of many Signal Mountain residents was halted as a result of two key arteries off the mountain — Signal Mountain Road, the W roads and Robert's Mill Road — are closed to traffic and impassable.

A rock slide has also blocked State Route 27 on Suck Creek Mountain near the Hamilton-Marion County line.

Bradley County had several roads covered with water Wednesday morning, said Matthew Casson,

  • photo
    Staff Photo by Tracy Trumbull Hamilton County work crews stabilize the eroded hillside wednesday morning after heavy rains overnight.

administrative assistant for the County Emergency Management office.

"One of the side benefits of the strong wind is that it keeps the water moving and dries

things out a little faster,'' Mr. Casson said.

Some downed trees and utility lines were reported in several spots of the county,

Mr. Casson said.

No injuries or structural damage was reported, he said.

"There are no reports of any creeks or waterways out of their banks,'' Mr. Casson said.

  • photo
    Staff Photo by Lesley Onstott Suck Creek rd. is damaged by a mudslide due to heavy rains.

And overnight there was no need to activate the EMA system, he said.

The Bradley County Road Department monitored the calls and responded to any affected roadways.

Check out this later in the day for continuing updates and read tomorrow’s Chattanooga Times Free Press for complete coverage.

  • photo
    Staff Photo by Tracey Trumbull W road closed
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Exusiai said...

Back when I was in school, if it was coming a monsoon, they made us go to school.

Carlos Mencia is right, they just keep lowering the standards a little bit each year.

Soon if a good strong breeze comes along "SCHOOLS CLOSED!"

December 9, 2009 at 8:50 a.m.
zensuit said...

Seriously? You would have sent school buses out at 5:30 AM, some of which have to come up the mountain roads that were damaged, to pick up children so they would get one more day of school?

I agree that the schools close too quickly but this time they actually made a good decision.

Back when I was in school I went to school where we actually spent money to fix roads properly AND paid income tax so we had much better schools.

We live in a state that makes it hard just to keep a school open let alone handle unusual circumstances and that's probably the real crime.

December 9, 2009 at 9:12 a.m.
Lilraine said...

I agree with Exusiai. I personally think the kids should be going to schools closer to their homes anyway.. not requiring them to go up and down mountains. but since they do, perhaps they should just excuse those who live in inclement areas but leave them open for those who would like to bring their children to school themselves.

December 9, 2009 at 9:34 a.m.
Exusiai said...


Perhaps you should go back and READ, what I wrote.

I said, and here I'll Cut and Paste to make it easier.

"Back when I was in school, if it was coming a monsoon, they made us go to school."

Look at the number of "Breaks" these kids get today compared to when you were in school (unless you just graduated or are in school, then nevermind)

We got a Christmas break, Spring Break, and Thanksgiving we got maybe Thursday thru Sunday.. Now they get 26 days off. Thats almost an entire month. Whiskey Tango Foxtrot?

thats Over 10% of the "School year" that Students get for a break.

In my days a 90 was a B, so our students are already getting a B level Education, as far as TIME goes.

December 9, 2009 at 10:07 a.m.
Lilraine said...

yep.. and once a month or so, they have a teacher productivity day where there is no school or 1/2 day. they didnt have that when I was a kid. all these days, add up. and where I grew up, spring break was a college thing.. not for HS or below. we did get a couple of days off for Easter, but that's it.

December 9, 2009 at 10:24 a.m.
Exusiai said...

Exactly Lil

Again lower the standards just a little bit.

December 9, 2009 at 10:29 a.m.
bandmom said...

Since you attended school whether the roads were safe or not, Exusiai, I'm surprised you still have poor grammar and need to use poorly disguised obscenities.

December 9, 2009 at 10:32 a.m.
dsantucci said...

Well my son's daycare is closed too because of this and now I can't work today. There is a ripple effect from school closings that lowers the productivity of the whole city. On the bright side, I think a day at the Aquarium with my son sounds like fun today!

December 9, 2009 at 10:35 a.m.
hrtofluv said...

Yeah - and back when you were in school - you started AFTER labor day and got out BEFORE memorial day. The number of days of school has NOT changed! We start earlier (mid-aug) and go through the 1st and sometimes 2nd week of June (if lots of snow days). I live on the mountain and one of the workers said no 18-wheelers are allowed because they are afraid more of the road will wash away. So, I would assume the same would go for school buses with large loads. But, I guess our children's safety is important to you! Your child must not ride on that bus! Anyway, I applaud HCDE for closing SMMHS and glad they let us know early enough to reconfigure our day.

December 9, 2009 at 11:02 a.m.
Exusiai said...


"Poorly disguised"

Since when is military uniform code a "poor disguise"?

While I admit my grammer, and my spelling are not the best in the world, I am still able to communicate my thoughts and ideas in a manner in which everyone can understand, and that is all that matters.

As for where I attended school. I attended East Brianerd Elementary (and lived close enough I walked to school, 2 blocks), Tyner Middle and High (rode the bus, we only colsed for snow), and City High School (School of Performing Arts; again I lived close enough to walk to school and I walked uphill in rain, or cold).

Children today are given way too many breaks, and then you wonder why when you go to the McDonalds, the kids behind the counter have no work ethic, or no drive or motivation. It's because they are given everything. Kids today expect everything to be handed to them, and have no disipline.

They get more breaks than we ever did, and feel they deserve them.

And we wonder why the world is going to hades in a hand basket.

December 9, 2009 at 11:06 a.m.
ctfpfan08 said...

Too many days off from school are NOT the problem. Stop blaming the schools for parents' general lack of ability to raise their own kids properly.

School closings have nothing to do with this issue anyway. School officials have to make these types of decisions for the safety of the whole.

'dsantucci' has the right idea! Turn lemons into lemonade and spend quality time with your child. If more parents did that it would be a different world.

December 9, 2009 at 11:23 a.m.
Exusiai said...


Try again

First Full Day of School Aug 12 2009 Last Full Day of School May 26th 2010

180 days total. (Per the PDF file Below)

With 26 Days off thats lets see, my basic math ... 26 divided by 180 = 14.4%

That is almost 15% of the "school year" spent not in school.

This isn't so much to me about the fact that the closed schools today, it's about the fact that In MY TIME, they would NOT HAVE closed the schools.

So I guess 20 years ago, the HCDE didn't care about me and my fellow classmates' saftey.

December 9, 2009 at 11:32 a.m.
hrtofluv said...

It's 180 instructional days total - that means it is EXCLUDING the days off. And back in 1990 - it was still 180 days of school. So, nothing has changed in the last 20 years according to TN state data.

Yes, and back in "my time", they probably wouldn't have closed for a light snow - it had to be more than 4 inches - because buses could do their routes in less than that. Schools closing are based on buses and whether they can do their routes or not. So, it is now and has always been about children's safety. But even back in your day, they would have closed schools for multiple flooded roads and roads washed away and mudslides across whole roads. So, on this day regardless of what year it is (2009 or 1980), the schools would have been closed.

December 9, 2009 at 11:56 a.m.
Exusiai said...

ctfpfan08 said....

"Too many days off from school are NOT the problem. Stop blaming the schools for parents' general lack of ability to raise their own kids properly."

I agree parents are not raising their kids properly, however schools are supposed to aid in that as far as education goes.

If they are not in school then the parents have to take time out of work, which is money out of their pockets (either through lost work, or having to pay a sitter) as was mentioned above it's a ripple effect.

December 9, 2009 at 12:04 p.m.
Exusiai said...


You are missing my point

At no point in my school career do I remember school being canceled due to rain/flooding.

In fact as far as I can recall it never was, and I can remember some days where I could swim in the front yard, because of flooding, but I still had to go to school.

Obviously the determination of what is and is not safe has changed in the past 20 years

December 9, 2009 at 12:20 p.m.
SavartiTN said...

Why couldn't they just close the schools that had routes that were in the flood zones?

And, ctfpfan08, I'm still waiting for my children's teachers to spend quality time with them (which they are paid for) while they ARE at school. In other words, I am blaming the SCHOOLS for their general lack of ability to educate my children. I suppose missing a perfectly beautiful sunshiney day doesn't matter much in the entire scheme of things. But I do get tired of every time the school board does something questionable, it gets turned around on the parents. Honey, the parents aren't the enemy...without them, teachers wouldn't have a job.

December 9, 2009 at 2:12 p.m.
Exusiai said...

SavartiTN Said.... "Why couldn't they just close the schools that had routes that were in the flood zones?"


See thats what I'm talking about, common sense, it pops up now and then, thank you SavartiTN!

How hard was that, how hard is it to got "the following schools are closed"

December 9, 2009 at 3:34 p.m.
Humphrey said...

I don't understand why every school in the county had to close. We had worse weather in the area I live this fall already and school didn't close. Signal Mt. has schools up there, they could stay open. Excuse people that can't get there. If one school has a furnace go out they don't close every school in the county.

December 9, 2009 at 7:03 p.m.
Lilraine said...

When I went to school.. from kindergarten thru 12th grade, the last day of school was June 28 or 29 and the first day back was the day after Labor Day. that was set in stone and I graduated in 1989. 2 months off. I'm told it's still the same today. when I moved down here my son was just about to start K and they had 3 months off for summer on top of all the same breaks inbetween. so yeah, they made summer vacation shorter, but it's still in no way comparable.

and this thread really has nothing to do with how parents raise their kids. the fact of the matter is, whether schools are closed or not, parents still have to get to work. they also have to be able to provide security for their children when they cant go to school. the school has the responsibility to at least 'try' to be there. I'd consider it a community thing. perhaps if students and teachers truly cant get there, then excuse them. but keep the schools open and functioning on some level to accommodate those kids who can get there.

when I went to work yesterday before noon it was beautiful outside. in my area and all around there was no flooding.. no one lost power. the kids in MY area couldve gone to school. it was retarded to close the schools from my perspective.

December 10, 2009 at 9:39 a.m.
Exusiai said...

Something Lilraine said made me think.

" the school has the responsibility to at least 'try' to be there. I'd consider it a community thing"

I concider it their job. Schools are paid for by the community. Therefore they are on our payroll ( all be it paid poorly for what they have to deal with.)

I agree yesterday was a beautiful day. I love close enough to walk to work, and I saw no reason to close schools yesterday. As I said, the way the weather was yesterday I'd have had to gone to school.

People who have to traverse Signal Mt Hwy I could understand (even though there is a detour).

But why did all of Hamilton County have to close?

December 10, 2009 at 10:03 a.m.
Lilraine said...

yes it is their job, and since everyone else who has a job has to go to work, so should they -if possible, of course. I'd expect turn-out to be lower, but enough people couldve gotten to my sons school to put em in classrooms and feed them lunch. they couldve watched movies for all I care. the schools serve the community by serving its children. that's why I look at it as a community thing if not a job thing. :)

December 10, 2009 at 10:22 a.m.
Exusiai said...

DOn't get me started on the if I miss work I don't get paid yet government officials can miss work and they get paid.

Lil I agree whole heartedly. There was no reason in my mind to close schools yesterday, when I woke up and saw the morning news and saw "hamilton county schools closed" I'd not looked outside yet I expected like a foot of snow.

Instead I got wet streets and Gray skies.

December 10, 2009 at 10:34 a.m.
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