Two dead after storms rake South, take aim at East

KATE BRUMBACK Associated Press Published:

ADAIRSVILLE, Ga. (AP) -- Kandi Cash trudged in rain through the splintered debris of her grandparents' house, hoping to salvage photos and other keepsakes after violent storms raked the Southeast, leaving two people dead before taking aim at the East Coast.

The demolished home was one of many in the Georgia city of Adairsville splintered by a massive storm front that punched across the Southeast on Wednesday and then headed across the densely populated Eastern seaboard early today.

Along a path pocked by shattered homes and businesses, the storm unleashed tornadoes and dangerous winds, easily flipping cars and trucks in Georgia. The heavy rains moving across the East Coast also raised flash flooding fears and forced water rescues in Virginia and Maryland near the nation's capital.

In the Northeast, utilities reported power outages affecting about 74,000 in Connecticut and feared more outages elsewhere as the potent storm races out over the Atlantic. Forecasters said snowfall was possible in varying amounts from the Great Lakes region through the Northeast.

A flash flood warning was issued for areas around the nation's capital as emergency responders in Virginia's Loudoun County said they conducted water rescues early today after flooding in some areas. One Virginia motorist was plucked from a van's rooftop after the vehicle veered into a water-filled ravine, WTOP radio reported. Water rescues also were reported in the Washington suburb of Montgomery County, Md.

Some flooding also was reported in North Carolina, where 13,000 utility customers were reported without power today after high winds and heavy rains swept toward the coast.

WSB-TV in Atlanta aired footage of an enormous funnel cloud bearing down on Adairsville. Winds flattened homes and wiped out parts of a big manufacturing plant in the city about 60 miles northwest of Atlanta. Pieces of insulation dangled from trees and power poles. A bank lost a big chunk of its roof.

Georgia Power said some 9,600 customers were still without power today.

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