Millington car lot owner shocked to lose half his inventory

By Lori Brown - bio | email

MILLINGTON, TN (WMC-TV) - As residents of Millington salvaged whatever they could Monday from their flood-soaked homes, business owners found themselves in similar, desperate situations.

"I had no idea my car lot was going to be underwater," car dealership owner Tommy Martin said. "I've never had a water problem here. The entire lot was covered."

It happened after a deluge of rain Saturday caused the Big Creek to overflow its levee in Millington.  Tommy Martin watched his livelihood going down the drain - because the water wouldn't.  

Martin estimated he lost 25 cars, or about half of his inventory.

"The tailpipes looked like turned on a water faucet when you first cranked them up," he said.

But Martin managed to save others.

"I've got a '79 Trans-Am, 80,000 miles car that can never be replaced, and water was up to the dash on it," he said. "But it cranked up looked like a propeller going through water. It moved out."

But while the water was gone Monday, the mess was not.

"I don't have flood insurance," Martin said. "I would never in a million years think I would need flood insurance here. It's never flooded, never built up, never had a problem."

But unfortunately, Martin said, one big flood is all it takes.

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