Storms killed at least two, injured dozens

Gov. Brian Kemp said the powerful storms that swept through Georgia on Thursday killed at least two people and injured dozens, as he urged residents in damaged areas to stay clear of emergency crews working to repair power and remove debris.

Kemp said that the severe weather was to blame for a fallen branch that killed a 5-year-old boy in Butts County and a state Department of Transportation worker who was responding to the damage.

”We’ve got families that seek shelter underneath their home and then the homes crumbled around them. So we had rescue teams out there trying to dig homes off of folks,” said James Stallings, the director of Georgia’s emergency agency. “We’ve got a lot of injuries.”

Authorities have traced at least four confirmed tornado tracks in Georgia. In Troup County, at least 50 homes were severely damaged, Stallings said. In Spalding County, another 130 people took refuge in an emergency shelter.

“People were stranded in homes where literally the whole home collapsed,” Kemp said.

Officials warned nearby residents that debris and fallen power lines are blocking crews from restoring power. Stallings urged them to stay where they are to avoid interfering with crews – and to be vigilant for falling debris that could cause more harm.

”Anything that’s loose will still fall,” he said, adding: “Be patient with us, we’re doing the best we can in the circumstances we are in.”