Gibson Co. woman and children escape sinkhole during flooding

GIBSON COUNTY, Tenn. — A Gibson County woman says she and two children are blessed after a near miss in last weekend’s flooding.

A normal Saturday drive turned dangerous for Dinah Hufstedler, her grandson, and one of his friends during last week’s heavy rains in Gibson County.

“All the sudden we just see this, a lot of water, and it was quite wide, and it was running very quickly,” Hufstedler said.

Hufstedler tried to turn around, but then she says the road crumbled.

“For a split second, I think we just sat there with our mouths open in shock, because we weren’t expecting for the road to fall out from underneath us,” Hufstedler said.

Hufstedler knew she needed to get the boys out of the car.

“I looked to the right and saw the road was still intact, so I said we have to go out the windows,” Hufstedler said.

Now she realizes the three of them are blessed to be alive.

“When I went and saw my car and spoke with Mr. Privitt is when I realized just how close and how dangerous the situation was,” Hufstedler said.

As she looked through pictures of her vehicle she says, if someone else discovered the sinkhole, it might not be the same story.

“He allowed this to happen to us so we can save the life of someone else,” Hufstedler said.

She has a warning for other drivers.

“As I looked at the road, it never entered my mind that something was going on beneath the road. So don’t stop to look, don’t stop to assess, get away immediately,” Hufstedler said.

Drivers can call 511 or check the TDOT Smartway map online for updates on flooded roads and conditions throughout West Tennessee.

TDOT says they continue to monitor all flooded roadways and have been checking any structure that might have gotten more water than usual.

Drivers are asked to continue to pay extra attention in areas that are or were previously flooded.

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