Officials said that after midnight on Friday, a powerful tornado plunged down in Nannan, Ga. The storm shook the residential neighborhoods and the city’s downtown, and forced firefighters and police officers to venture out into the rain and darkness of the morning to try to assess the severity of the damage.
Officials said the fatal attack occurred at a morning news conference in Couta County. There were no reported injuries within the Newnan city limits, but Stephen Brown said investigations were being carried out to ensure the damaged structures were in place.
Officials said most of the 911 calls they received overnight were for trees that fell on homes.
Sheriff Lane Wood of Cowta County said, “I would like to express my deepest sympathy and remorse to everyone who had property damage during the night.”
The devastation hit Newnan, a city of about 35,000 southwest of Atlanta, after a swath from the southeast was bombarded by tornado, hail and heavy rain on Thursday.
In Alabama, at least five people were killed in homes and businesses. The National Weather Service reported several storms in Alabama, including one traveling more than 100 miles from Birmingham to the north-east corner of the state.
In Alabama, Tennessee and Georgia, officers were working from Thursday night to Friday morning, clearing roads to remove utility lines of trees and trees and searching through the rubble of homes that injured or killed anyone They went.
Officials said five deaths occurred in Calhoun County, between Birmingham and the Georgia state line, where crews were conducting search and rescue operations.
The victims include a family of three who lived in a wooden house in Ohate, a man in a mobile home in the same city, and a woman in a mobile home in Wellington, said Calhoun County Coroner, Pat Brown.
In Florence, Ala., A police officer was struck by lightning at the height of the storm that afternoon, said Mike Holt, chief of the city’s police force. The officer was burnt but survived. “He’s doing really well who got hit by lightning,” Chief Holt said.
In and around Birmingham, many were damaging homes and businesses, some devastating, while officials worked to clear debris and help people trapped in their homes.
“Our priority at this time is identifying citizens in need of emergency medicine,” Shelby County Sheriff, John Samaniago, said in a statement. “This search and outreach effort will continue throughout the night and into the early hours of the morning.”
Meteorologists said that before midnight a strong tornado scattered through a section of Georgia, southwest of Atlanta. Authorities were not yet sure about the damage, but already, images were emerging early Friday, with houses, trees being uprooted and torn down.
“Tonight’s weather caused heavy damage in and around the historic downtown area,” Newton city officials said in a statement on Friday. “Please note that both city and county crews are en route and are working on the scene to clean the affected areas. Please be safe and take shelter in your homes. Be safe! “
According to Newnan High School, much was damaged. Local media report, And county schools canceled both individual and remote classes on Friday.
Thursday began a series of dangerous storms after the National Weather Service issued hurricane warnings in Alabama, Georgia and South Carolina, urging residents to face the deadliest threat ever! Forecasters also warned that other parts of those states, as well as Tennessee and Mississippi, could see hurricanes that brought a high risk of hurricanes, as well as floods.
Officials warned residents to close the school and government offices early. “Stay home, stay safe, stay informed,” Andy Burke, Mayor of Chaitanooga, Tenen, said on Twitter. In Birmingham, the city government opened safe rooms and placed barricades in flood-prone areas.
On Thursday morning, Government of alabama More than 20 counties declared a state of emergency and required residents to “closely monitor the weather system,” especially if their areas were at high risk.
In some similar areas, disastrous weather returned a week later Hit by a powerful storm Flowed through Mississippi and Alabama before moving to Georgia, the Carolinas, and Virginia. In January, led to a tornado in Alabama 14 year old boy dies In Fultondale, a suburb of Birmingham; He took refuge with his relatives in a cellar when a tree fell on the house.
According to preliminary calculations, in 2020, there were about 1,000 tornado and 76 tornado deaths in the United States. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
National Weather Service It is suggested that people take refuge in cupboards, bathrooms or “interior halls” if a tornado is approaching. Residents in mobile homes should be sure to find a strong building or storm shelter. If outside, people should locate a nearby ditch or a low place and lie flat with their head down for protection.
“When the warning is issued, you need to take action and wait until you can see the danger,” said Bill Bunting, head of forecasting operations at the National Weather Service.
Trussville, Ala. In, Hannah Carter rides the storm at home, wearing a helmet on her two children and taking them to a small cell with her, her husband and her dog.
“It’s been a crazy day,” he said.
He later learns that a tornado had come dangerously close to his home, but his property was unheard of. She recalled a tornado in 2011 that came across a street or two or even within her home. “It was a very nostalgic, flashback experience,” Ms. Carter said. “It could have been much worse.”
In Birmingham, James Spann, the chief meteorologist for the area’s ABC affiliate stations and a stable of local tornado coverage, was reporting on storms when a tornado came into his own home.
“What I’m doing is texting my wife to make sure she’s at the shelter,” Mr. Span said as the live camera shot showed a wide, bailing tornado.
For a few minutes, Broadcast was led by Mr. Spann’s colleague, Taylor Saralo.
“It’s not a good situation,” Mr. Span said when he returned. “I had a reason to get out – we have suffered a major loss at our house. My wife is fine, but the tornado came through.”
Rick rojas Reported from Nashville, Will write From new york and Christina Morales From Miami. Alison Waller And Derrick Bryson Taylor contributed reporting.