Severe storms roll through metro Atlanta

by: Craig Lucie Updated:

Powerful storms in north Fulton County toppled trees onto homes and streets Tuesday evening, keeping one family away from their damaged home for at least one night.

A large tree fell onto the back of a home on Marchman Drive in Sandy Springs, landing inside the sunroom.

"The house is almost cut in two," neighbor Joel Blackford told Channel 2's Amy Napier Viteri.

The family who lives at the home wasn't there when a violent storm brought the tree down. Blackford described high winds and nickel-sized hail so loud he didn't hear the tree fall even though he lives across the street.

The storm knocked out power and the tree left debris and insulation inside the home, which firefighters told the family was not safe.

"The tree fell all the way down to a back yard retaining wall and crushed the house with it," Blackford added.

On Hunting Creek Road, police said an elderly couple was trapped in their house when two trees fell on top of it.

"I heard a big heavy boom, sounded like a big refrigerator was dropped on the floor, and I guess that was the tree coming down on the house," said neighbor Bill Buckley.

The couple got out and police said they weren't hurt.

Several roads were also blocked due to the storm. A large tree fell across Lake Forrest Drive and took down power lines with it.

Channel 2’s Craig Lucie went to a Norcross subdivision where storms knocked down five trees within 20 yards of each other. Crews were cleaning up debris at the Spalding Corners neighborhood off Glen Meadow and Spalding drives. Uprooted trees and large branches snapped power lines and landed on top of homes.

“It cracked. Then, it hit the house, and the house shook. It was pretty loud, and the wind was loud itself,” Dick Hays told Lucie.

Hays said the storm was quick, dumping sheets of rain. He said the damage from the tree on his roof could be worse.

“We’ve got some ceiling damage and things like that, but no water came in,” Hays said.

Just a few houses down, Jerry Rhodes said he watched transformers explode.

“We probably did not realize how bad it was. We were seeing a lot of driving rain and hail. I came to the front of the house, and I looked out and said, ‘Oh goodness, I got trees down in the front,’” said Rhodes.

Gwinnett County Fire crews said lighting caused a house fire in Suwannee.

The weather was blamed for power outages for at least 10,000 Georgia Power customers. The company said the majority of those affected are customers in the northern parts of metro Atlanta.