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Storms rake over state

One dead, seven injured in Alabama, Georgia

POSTED: February 19, 2009 9:08 a.m.
ATLANTA - One person was killed and at least 7 were injured when tornadoes, thunderstorms and hail downed trees and power lines in a sweep across Georgia and Alabama, authorities said Thursday.

The National Weather Service planned to send out teams to check on possible tornado touchdowns after the severe weather front moved through from Wednesday afternoon into the night.

In Alabama, an apparent tornado uprooted trees in Geneva near the Florida line. No injuries were reported.

In Georgia, Kent McMullen, a meteorologist with the weather service in Peachtree City, said the reported death was in the Hancock County town of Sparta, about 88 miles southeast of Atlanta. Authorities have not released the person's name.

A spokesman for the Georgia Emergency Management Agency said besides the fatality, three others were injured in Hancock County.

GEMA spokesman Buzz Weiss said he didn't have any further details and that National Weather Service experts would have to determine if a tornado hit the county.

Another two people were reported injured in Spalding County and one each in Coweta and Putnam counties. The Coweta County injury was from a lightning strike.

Georgia Power Co. reported more than 4,000 customers without power at the height of the storms Wednesday night, with 1,400 customers statewide still without electricity Thursday morning. That included at least 1,000 customers in the metro area south of Atlanta. Spokeswoman Carol Boatright said six utility poles were taken out by a possible tornado in Grantville in Coweta County.

She said 350 customers in the Savannah area remained without power after a tree fell on lines.

Meanwhile, Georgia's Electric Membership Corporations restored power to nearly 9,400 customers who lost power Wednesday night. Crews worked Thursday morning to restore power to a couple of hundred customers in Jasper and Spalding counties after about 30 utility poles were broken in the storm.


 

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