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Storm kills two in Butts; close call here

A Butts County man and his three-year-old child were killed overnight when a tree toppled by strong winds fell on their home. The man’s wife and another child were sleeping in a different room and survived. There was a close call on Philip Weldon Rd. in Lamar County as well, according to fire chief Steve Andrews. Firefighters managed to save a woman and her grandchildren from a burning home but ‘it was close’, Andrews said. Downed trees blocked roadways and delayed firefighters’ response. At 8:50 a.m., Southern Rivers Energy had about 2000 customers without power. “Most of those are grouped together on a couple of main lines that are down due to fallen trees. When we get those repaired, a lot of people will have power restored at the same time. Some of the others are transmission outages and SRE cannot repair them,” spokesman Bobby Ferris reported. To view the SRE outage updater, visit http://68.208.12.169:82/. At the peak of the storm, about 2700 cooperative members were without power. “Again most of the large numbers were due to transmission outages affecting entire substations. We are on top of things but clearing the trees may take some time. All available crews are working but we still have a lot of isolated outages to deal with” Ferris added. One major issue overnight was the cooperative’s loss of telephone service. “Our connection with AT&T was interrupted last night so we did not get a lot of the calls reporting outages,” Ferris said. SRE is monitoring winds and its system for further problems. “Calls are coming in with outages as people wake up. Most are on the western part of our system but scattered. The main causes are downed lines due to fallen trees along with blown fuses due to lightning,” Ferris said. Storm damage is widespread with nearly 200,000 homes without power statewide at daybreak. Do you have a storm story to tell? Email news@barnesville.com More on this story as it develops.

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