Monday morning storms spur tornado warnings, damage across Middle TN

·2 min read
Don Robinson was inside a school bus as it flipped over near Hartsville during severe storms this morning. High winds also sent his camper careening into the bus. He escaped unhurt.
Don Robinson was inside a school bus as it flipped over near Hartsville during severe storms this morning. High winds also sent his camper careening into the bus. He escaped unhurt.

Several tornado and severe thunderstorm warnings were issued as severe weather, including at least one confirmed tornado, moved through Middle Tennessee early Monday morning.

Power outages rippled across the region before dawn, with nearly 6,000 without power at the peak. Trousdale County was among the counties hit hard by the morning storms, which triggered a brief tornado warning there.

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A camper was picked up by high winds and landed on a school bus as the driver, Don Robinson, tried to leave his property near Hartsville, Trousdale County Sheriff Ray Russell said. No students were on board.

"It started rocking and everything and I thought, 'This bus is fixing to turn over on its side,'" Robinson said after the ordeal. "Next thing I know, I couldn't get out. I thank the good Lord that I wasn't hurt."

Don Robinson pets his dog as he stands on his property in Hartsville. "We're going to be alright," he said.
Don Robinson pets his dog as he stands on his property in Hartsville. "We're going to be alright," he said.

Robinson said his grandson came out of the house to help free him. He said two of his horses died in the storm in a field nearby. He rode one of them just a day before.

"I hate that I lost her," Robinson said. "I raised her from a foal."

Reflecting on his experience, Robinson said he was happy to be alive and ready to help his community recover from the damage.

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"You've just got to put it back together, like the people over in Waverly," he said. "You've got to get up, start going and do it again."

Workers repair damaged power lines in Harstville.
Workers repair damaged power lines in Harstville.

Trousdale County Schools canceled classes Monday and tentatively plans to resume Tuesday. Russell said that power lines and trees were down all over the county, which led to the school closures. The school itself was not damaged, he said.

Cheatham County Schools announced a two-hour delay for Monday morning. NWS Nashville gave the "all clear" around 9:30 a.m. Most power outages across the region were restored by 10:30 a.m.

Reports of downed trees and power lines and other damage peppered the region in the wake of the storms. Coffee County officials said a possible tornado touched down on the north side of Tullahoma, where there were reports of damaged roofs.

Late Monday evening, NWS Nashville confirmed that an EF-1 tornado touched down in Tullahoma. They will be reviewing damage in several counties in the days to come.

Arcelia Martin and Stephanie Amador contributed to this story.

Reach Rachel Wegner at RAwegner@tennessean.com or find her on Twitter @rachelannwegner.

This article originally appeared on Nashville Tennessean: Nashville weather: Severe storms prompt tornado warnings in Middle TN

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