Tornado, thunderstorm warnings accompany severe storms

A tornado watch issued for all of metro Atlanta and much of North Georgia expired at 2 p.m., but damaging winds, large hail and rain knocked over trees and downed  power lines across metro Atlanta.  

The storms moved across Alabama and into Georgia overnight, and stuck around for most of Sunday before settling down.

The storm system was predicted to bring winds stronger than 60 mph, said Channel 2 Action News meteorologist Eboni Deon. 

“The rain stretches from Texas all the way into the Lower Mississippi Valley,” Deon said Saturday. “That energy will be moving in our direction overnight into early Sunday morning. ... We’ll have heavy rain and the possibility of hail as well as tornadoes and strong damaging winds early in the day.”

Tornado warnings were issued for some counties as the storms came through, including in Gwinnett and Henry.  Severe thunderstorm warnings also were issued during the day. Metro Atlanta managed to avoid the brunt of the destructive system

However, on Sunday evening  a severe thunderstorm watch went into effect until 10 p.m. for part of North Georgia and metro Atlanta. 

Counties under the watch include Banks, Barrow, Cherokee, Clayton, Cobb, Dawson, DeKalb, Douglas, Fannin, Fayette, Forsyth, Fulton, Gilmer, Gwinnett, Hall, Jackson, Lumpkin, Pickens, Towns, Union and White.

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In the first wave of storms earlier in the day, in Cherokee County, authorities said a tree came down across the roadway at Golf Course Road in Canton. In Gwinnett County, the fire department said there were at least four reports of trees bringing down power lines and three reports of downed trees blocking roadways. 

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The storms also pushed up the start time of the Masters, which saw brief delays on Friday during short showers.

 

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The good news is that the wet weather was expected to help clear out some of this pollen.

The pollen count dropped from 6,575 on Saturday, which was in the “extremely high” range, to 1,075 on Sunday. 

A strong cold front should clear North Georgia by late Sunday, leaving the air behind it cooler and drier. Monday morning lows are expected to be chilly in the 40s and highs will only reach the 60s. 

» For a detailed forecast, visit The Atlanta Journal-Constitution weather page.

» For updated traffic information, listen to News 95.5 and AM 750 WSB and follow  @ajcwsbtraffic  on Twitter. 

» Download  The Atlanta Journal-Constitution app for weather alerts on-the-go.

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