ATLANTA – Storms packing large hail, lightning and drenching rain pounded the Southeast over the weekend, injuring motorists in Georgia and Mississippi and flooding rivers and streets across the region.
In northwest Atlanta, the grandchildren of one woman had to be rescued from her house because of Sunday's rising floodwaters. Firefighters used ladders to get the children out of the house.
Parts of central Georgia saw up to 8 inches of rain Sunday, forcing at least five rivers from their banks, said National Weather Service (search) meteorologist Kent McMullen said. Near Newnan, the rain was blamed for a five-car pile up that shut down Interstate 85 in both directions Sunday. Three people were injured.
Trees fell and hail pelted parts of south-central Mississippi. Mississippi Emergency Management Agency (search) officials said two people were injured and the hardest hit areas appeared to be Hinds and Yazoo counties.
A Yazoo County man was hospitalized in stable condition Saturday night after a tree and power lines fell on his car, agency spokeswoman Lea Stokes said. A woman in Yazoo County was treated at a hospital and released after "hail went through the windshield of her car."
A possible tornado Sunday afternoon damaged some trees and homes in a rural area near Montgomery, Ala., but no injuries were reported. Anita Patterson, the director of the Montgomery County Emergency Management Agency, said damage was not extensive and roads were passable.
In southwest Georgia, residents of Dougherty County left Sunday church services to find the water had risen over the road. Dougherty County Public Works (search) employee Booker Saylor said it's the worst flooding he's seen since the 1990s.
In Washington state, meanwhile, an early spring storm drenched both sides of the Cascades and brought snow to the mountains, turning Snoqualmie Pass into an icy mess where at least 30 accidents were reported, one of them fatal.