NASHVILLE, Tenn. – More rain was expected to soak parts of a water-weary South on Tuesday and Wednesday, prompting flood warnings and watches, especially in Middle Tennessee.
At least six people have been killed and many others had to be rescued in floods that first surged in parts of Tennessee, including Nashville, over the weekend.
The National Weather Service said 1 to 3 more inches of rain from southern Arkansas to Middle Tennessee could lead to flooding late Tuesday into Wednesday.
“Much of this region has experienced well above average rainfall over the last week; therefore, any additional heavy rain will likely cause rivers to overflow their banks quickly,” forecasters said.
Some thunderstorms could strike in the area, potentially bringing damaging winds and large hail, according to the weather service.
The weather service issued a flash flood watch covering all of Middle Tennessee from 7 p.m. Tuesday through Wednesday. Parts of eastern Kentucky, southeastern Virginia and northern Alabama were also under flash flood watches.
“Normally this amount of rain wouldn’t cause flooding, but because it is so wet, there is that possibility,” weather service meteorologist Sam Shamburger said.
Once the storms leave Tennessee, they will head toward the Southeast and mid-Atlantic late Wednesday, forecasters said. Some flash flooding could be possible in southern Appalachia and the mid-Atlantic; farther north, temperatures will drop, prompting a few inches of wet snow Thursday morning in New York.
Historic rains drenched the South over the weekend, and the 7.01 inches of rain that fell at the Nashville airport from Saturday to Sunday was the second-highest two-day rainfall total recorded in the city.
Four people in Nashville, one in Hawkins County and one in Cheatham County died in the flooding, Tennessee officials said.
Fire and emergency management officials launched boats to rescue about 130 people from homes and vehicles in Nashville. Dozens more were rescued in neighboring counties. Tuesday, the rescues continued, including an adult and child saved on the roof of a car in about 2 feet of water, authorities said. No injuries were reported.
Nashville Mayor John Cooper called the deaths “deeply disturbing” and declared a state of emergency to help cleanup efforts.
Monday in Brentwood, just south of Nashville, city officials declared a state of emergency after more than 8 inches of rain fell in a 24-hour period, according to the weather service. More than 50 people needed to be rescued because of flooding. Nearby Franklin also declared a state of emergency. 
In Cheatham County, west of Nashville, the roads were so flooded Monday that officials had to help stranded residents with a truck equipped for high water.
“We’ve had to go in and retrieve a few people that had to get out for medical treatments,” Ashland City Fire Chief James Walker said.
First responders carried eight people from their homes Monday morning and made a second trip shortly thereafter to retrieve medication from a home.
Roads are under roughly 4 feet of water, making it impossible for residents to leave or return to their homes, officials said.
“They’re kind of like on an island. The areas that go into the community are low, and the river covers it when it gets to this elevation,” Walker said.
Sunday, Ashland City Fire officials worked with the Kingston Springs and Dickson City fire departments to save a 27-year-old man.
“He had driven his car off into the river and was hanging onto a tree,” Walker said.
First responders rode nearly 2 miles downstream in a swift-water rescue boat to the man’s location after it was pinged by 911.
“I think it was fortunate he had a waterproof case on his phone and had his phone in his pocket,” Walker said.
Meteorologist Sam Herron at the National Weather Service in Nashville said everything “came together at the wrong moment to focus those storms all over the same area” over the weekend. Moisture in the atmosphere, a slow-moving cold front and thunderstorms boiling over high in the atmosphere all worked together to create the deadly downpour. 
Luckily, Herron said, the forecast after Wednesday calls for a dry spell, possibly up to a week of rain-free days. 
The weekend flooding in Nashville was the worst to hit the region since May 2010. Those floods caused 21 deaths in Tennessee and about $1.5 billion in damage in Nashville.
March historically is a turbulent month for weather in Tennessee. Last March, tornadoes killed more than 20 people and destroyed more than 140 buildings in the middle of the state.
Contributing: Mariah Timms, Brinley Hineman, Duane W. Gang and Yihyun Jeong, The (Nashville) Tennessean; Doyle Rice, USA TODAY; The Associated Press