Southeast storms: Severe weather expected again Wednesday, after previous storms killed at least 2

More than 46 million people are under some level of threat for severe storms Wednesday across much of the Southeast and parts of the southern Appalachians, with damaging winds, several tornadoes and large hail possible, the Storm Prediction Center said.

The day’s highest threat — a level 3 of 5 — exists for about 13.6 million of those people, in parts of Alabama, Tennessee, far western North Carolina and Georgia, including the Atlanta area and the Alabama cities of Birmingham and Montgomery, according to the prediction center.

• Severe storms by early afternoon across Alabama and south Georgia, potentially over the same areas hit Tuesday.

• Storms along an advancing cold front that will swing through the Southeast during the afternoon and night.

Wednesday’s greatest tornado potential is across southern Georgia, while damaging wind tastes are likely further north, across northern Alabama and Georgia into Tennessee.

A flood watch also is in effect for parts of Georgia until Thursday morning, because heavy rain could flood already-high rivers and creeks and lead to flash flooding, the National Weather Service said.

2 killed Tuesday as strong storms and tornadoes rip the South

Wednesday’s weather comes after parts of the South dealt with a series of storms Monday and Tuesday that killed at least two people.

Dozens of tornado reports were made Monday and Tuesday from Texas into the Southeast, including at least 38 Tuesday in Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia and South Carolina, according to the weather service.

Suspected and confirmed twisters, as well as strong winds, downed trees and power lines across portions of these areas, as well as damaging homes and businesses across several states.

A man in East Texas was killed early Tuesday when a tree fell on an RV in the community of Whitehouse, the Smith County emergency management coordinator said.

Another person died in Bryan County, Georgia, as severe weather swept through the area, local officials said. The county, which is near Savannah, declared a state of emergency due to the impacts of a tornado and set a curfew through early Wednesday, officials said.

Tornado debris trapped several people in their homes in Bryan County, emergency officials said.

Trystan McCorkle took video of a tornado on Interstate 16 just before exit 143 in Bryan County, Georgia.

Mary Edwards was driving on Interstate 16 in Georgia not far from Savannah when she saw a tornado ahead Tuesday.

The twister appeared just minutes after Edwards received an alert on her phone for a tornado warning.

“To see it right before you, it’s humbling. It’s exciting, it’s majestic, and you really get that sense of mortality. You surrender,” she said.

Suspected tornadoes were reported Tuesday in South Carolina’s Allendale County, where four homes were destroyed, five others suffered major damage and at least three people suffered non-life-threatening injuries, the state emergency management division said.
A home was damaged in Randell Petrie's neighborhood in middle Georgia's Houston County during a storm Tuesday.

In middle Georgia’s Houston County, Randell Petrie, his wife and dog hid in their home for about two minutes as a severe storm hit his neighborhood: “I hear the sound of a train and told my wife to get in the closet,” he said .

When the rain let up about 30 minutes later, he went outside and saw homes damaged from fallen trees, including at least one tree that crushed a roof and came to rest inside the building, he said. Some trees were uprooted; others were snapped, pictures from Petrie showed.

Correction: An earlier version of this story overstated the number of people under the day’s most severe weather threat level. About 13.6 million people live in the area with that threat level.

CNN’s Aya Elamroussi, Sharif Paget, Sara Smart, Dave Alsup and Rebekah Riess contributed to this report.


Leave a Comment