Weekend storms leave major damage in metro area



HALL COUNTY, Ga. - Warmer temperatures and sunny skies will return on Monday, but many people are dealing with damage that weekend storms left behind.

Channel 2 Action News crews saw fallen trees, washed-out roads and flooding throughout the metro area.

Flowery Branch Mayor Mike Miller declared a state of emergency for the city.

This comes after the "determination that the flash flooding that occurred within the city threatened the loss of life and property, as well as created a major disruption of routine affairs, business and government operations within the city."

As a result of this declaration, Miller has the authority to implement local emergency measures to protect life and property or to take appropriate measures to bring the emergency situation under control, according to a statement from the City of Flowery Branch.

Floods on Stephens Road in Flowery Branch created a dangerous attraction for residents. A large section of the road was washed out, leaving a huge hole. Atlanta Highway, a major thoroughfare in Flowery Branch, is flooded and impassable. Drivers are advised to avoid the area.

A few miles away, residents waited as crews repaired the only way in and out of their neighborhood on Trudy Road.

"You get in a place like this, it's wet and you can't get out. It's very depressing," Trudy Road resident Pat Benton said.

Trudy Road has been repaired and is open for use.

Part of Spring Street in Flowery Branch also washed out. Miller said he is concerned because the road services 100 people who live in an apartment complex and have no other way in and out.

All of Hall County is under a boil water advisory until 9 p.m. Monday.

Cobb County residents left without power

Crews worked overnight to clear trees that fell on cars, blocked traffic and mangled power lines in Cobb County on Sunday.

At one point, at least 13,000 people were without power in Cobb County, forcing crews to call in contract workers as backup. That number was down to 500 by Monday morning.

Powder Springs officials said five power poles were down Sunday evening.

Crews said this is the worst storm they have seen in years, and neighbors agreed.

Jay Winters was in the thick of the mess. He was looking for his dogs when he watched a big tree come crashing down near Paris Avenue.

"I thought I was about to get killed or something," he told Channel 2's Liz Artz.

At least three trees fell within a block of each other in the area, leaving the neighborhood without electricity.

"I'm thinking of my stuff in my freezer fridge melting right now," said Claire Johnson, noting the storm was the worst she's seen as a Cobb resident of 42 years.

"The sky was black-looking; wind blowing like crazy," she told Artz.

About five miles away, another massive tree fell across Dillard Street in Powder Springs.

In nearby Paulding County, 2,000 people remain without power.

Flooding causes damage in Gwinnett, Forsyth counties

In Forsyth County, drivers faced several road closures due to flooding. In addition to Nicholson Road, Old Federal Road has been shut down. Officials said Parks Road off Highway 306 is washed out. Officials warn that Sanders Road between Mary Alice Park and Timberlake Trail could collapse due to flood damage. 

A driver got stuck on Nicholson Road while attempting to drive around barricades in northwest Forsyth. A photo of the ordeal was sent to Channel 2 Action News, showing water up to the SUV’s headlights. Officials said the driver was able to make it to safer ground.

In Lawrenceville, lightning destroyed a home on Egret Court. Lightning struck about 6 a.m., first hitting an upstairs bedroom and then sparking a fire. Authorities said the family was home at the time, but no one was hurt.

All the rain forced officials to close two bridges in Johns Creek in north Fulton. The Buice Road and Parsons Road bridges were reopened Sunday night. Officials said a tree fell and took down some power lines at Parsons Bridge. They closed Buice as a precaution when the water levels started to rise.

Meanwhile, authorities have deemed the Chattahoochee River a health threat.

The E coli count is more than 32,000 near Medlock Bridge Road. That total is nearly 140 times the level when officials issued an alert.

Channel 2’s Tom Regan took iPhone video of Chattahoochee's high water along Riverside Drive under Georgia 400 in Roswell. Park benches are partially submerged. 

It is still unclear if heavy rains contributed to a multiple-vehicle crash at Interstate 985 northbound at exit 14.  But the crash forced authorities to close the road among others in south Hall County. Channel 2 crews are following up on whether anyone was hurt in the crash.

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