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Storms kill two in Georgia before pushing east

  • Story Highlights
  • Sheriff: Possible tornado caused heavy damage in Prosperity, South Carolina
  • "We are unable to respond to all of the calls," dispatcher says
  • Deaths reported in Polk and Floyd Counties in Georgia on Saturday
  • Saturday's storms followed EF-2 tornado that tore through Atlanta on Friday
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(CNN) -- Storms that killed two people in northern Georgia spread Saturday night into South Carolina, where possible tornadoes downed trees, blew roofs off homes and broke power lines, weather forecasters said.

There was heavy damage in Prosperity, South Carolina, where residents reported seeing a tornado touch down, said Newberry County sheriff's Capt. Todd Johnson. Prosperity is 40 miles northwest of Columbia.

A woman was severely injured when a tree fell on her trailer, trapping her inside, Johnson said.

About 56,000 customers remained without power Sunday morning after storms swept through Savannah knocking out power while the coastal Georgia city was in the midst of its St. Patrick's Day celebrations, said Carol Boatwright of Georgia Power.

Damage was reported Saturday night in the counties of Newberry, McCormick, Edgefield, Lexington, Aiken and Kershaw.

"We have numerous reports of tornadoes touching down. There is a lot of damage, and we are unable to respond to all of the calls," a dispatcher for the Aiken County Sheriff's Department said.

Meanwhile, the storm danger passed in the Atlanta, Georgia, area. A Friday night tornado packing winds of up to 135 miles per hour cut a path 6 miles long and 200 yards wide through downtown in less than 30 minutes. Video Watch a flyover of a damaged area in Georgia »

There was heavy damage to many structures, including the CNN world headquarters. On Saturday, windows were still popping out from a high-rise nearby. Heavy rain and hail passed through in the afternoon. Video Watch video of storm damage in Georgia »

Two people died in northern Georgia on Saturday as waves of dangerous thunderstorms pounded the area, and storms continued into Saturday night. A possible tornado destroyed mobile homes in Jefferson County, and another possible tornado was reported in Clarke County, where Athens is located, the weather service reported.

A woman died and her husband was seriously injured when a tornado leveled their home in the Live Oak community, just north of Aragon, Polk County officials said. Aragon is about 50 miles northeast of Atlanta. Video Watch damage in Polk County »

Aragon police were assessing damage when they found the house about 12:30 p.m., Polk County Police Chief Kenneth Dodd said. The part-brick, part-frame home was reduced to rubble.

The injured man was taken to a Rome, Georgia, hospital, Dodd said.

Five dead dogs were found in a nearby field, and other injured animals were taken to an animal control agency, he said.

A family across the street from the couple's home lost part of their roof. Another person was seriously injured elsewhere, said Thomas Wilson, Polk County's 911 director.

The second fatality was in Floyd County, about 7 miles southeast of Lindale in the Wax community, where a possible tornado struck about 4:30 p.m., said Scotty Hancock, the county emergency management director. Video Watch damage in Floyd County »

The National Weather Service estimated that 20 homes were destroyed in the area.

Damage was also reported in Taylorsville and Cartersville, about 40 miles northwest of Atlanta, and suspected tornado touchdowns were reported in Gainesville in Hall County, near Homer in Banks County and near Maysville in Jackson County.

A tornado was also reported in northern Forsyth County, sheriff's Capt. Michael Honiker said. At least one structure fire was reported, he said.

Hail nearly 3 inches in diameter was reported in Dawsonville, the National Weather Service said.

There were 41,000 people without power statewide Saturday evening, according to Georgia Power.


Saturday's severe weather followed an EF-2 tornado, with top winds of up to 135 mph that ripped through downtown Atlanta on Friday night. There were no fatalities, and only one serious injury was reported.

Rain, wind and hail caused additional power outages Saturday in the Atlanta area and triggered delays of more than an hour for flights leaving Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport, according to an airport spokesman. E-mail to a friend E-mail to a friend

CNN's Audrey Irvine contributed to this report.

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