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Storms leave damage as they move across Deep South

Storms moving through the Deep South Thursday left damage in southeastern Alabama and west central Georgia after flooding caused a death in North Carolina earlier in the week.

Trees are on top of houses and a mobile home is off its foundation along U.S. 29 between Troy and the Banks community, Jeanna Barnes of the Pike County Emergency Management Agency in Alabama said Thursday.

A man was trapped in his home by a fallen tree, Barnes said. To the north, in Montgomery County, fallen trees blocked roads and caused minor structural damage.

Central Georgia was under a tornado watch when a possible twister struck Talbot County, about 90 miles south of Atlanta, on Thursday afternoon. Three homes were damaged, including a mobile home that had a tree fall onto it, said Leigh Ann Erenheim, Talbot County emergency management director. She said a woman inside the mobile home sprained her ankle getting outside, but no one else was hurt.

The storm uprooted trees and snapped power lines, leaving many in Talbot County without power. Erenheim said the storm carved a path that appeared to be the mark of tornado.

“Where it gets into trees it looks like somebody went through with a lawnmower and cut them off,” she said.

No serious were injuries were reported, but the National Weather Service issued at least a half-dozen warnings.

The severe weather came on the anniversary of the day dozens of twisters plowed across the Southeast on April 27, 2011, killing more than 250 people in Alabama. In Montgomery, flags were lowered in memory of the victims as storms rumbled.

In North Carolina, flooding continued Thursday in more than a dozen counties in the eastern part of the state after storms dumped as much as 8 inches of rain in some places earlier this week.

Details emerged about a woman who died after the Highway Patrol said she drove around several barricades and was swept away by floodwaters.

Local news outlets said the car on N.C. 58 was carried away by high water from Contentnea Creek about 8 p.m. Wednesday in Greene County near Stantonsburg. The woman was alone in the car, which was later found by firefighters.

Highway Patrol Sgt. Michael Baker said the victim was 65-year-old Sandra Berry of Kissimmee, Florida.

Transportation department officials found a man’s body Tuesday while removing debris at a bridge over the Neuse River near Smithfield, but the police department said that a preliminary autopsy determined the man’s death wasn’t storm related. That man’s name has not been released.

The American Red Cross opened a shelter in Tarboro as the rain-swollen Tar River rises east of Raleigh.

Schools were closed Thursday for a second straight day in Edgecombe County. The county said on its Facebook page Wednesday that several roads were impassable and that residents on one road outside the town of Pinetops have been evacuated. The county reported nine state roads were closed in the county.

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