Debris from the storm was blown onto Hwy. 115 near Truett McConnell University in Cleveland. Emergency officials across the region spent the early morning hours responding to numerous reports of fires, downed trees, and power lines. (Daniel Purcell/

(Cleveland)- Severe storms swept across north Georgia overnight Wednesday into Thursday morning. Emergency crews from across the region responded to numerous reports of fires, downed trees, and power lines as heavy rain and high winds swept through the region.

“It was like a hurricane and a tornado mixed,” described Now Habersham’s Daniel Purcell, who was traveling on Highway 115 between Dahlonega and Habersham County at the height of the storm around midnight. “It was like a hurricane and tornado mixed,” he said, describing the heavy rain and wind that swirled around him. “I was dodging trees and power lines just to get home.”

The line of storms comes on the heels of a storm system that brought gusty winds and hail to the region around midnight Wednesday, knocking out electricity to thousands of homes and businesses.

Downed trees, limbs, and power lines have been reported in several areas of Hall, White, Banks, Rabun, and Habersham counties since midnight, with crews from several utility companies working to restore services.

Storm damage Highway 115 east of Cleveland Photo HEMC Facebook

White County Public Safety reported these road situations early Thursday:

𝟱/𝟵/𝟮𝟬𝟮𝟰 𝗥𝗼𝗮𝗱 𝗖𝗹𝗼𝘀𝘂𝗿𝗲𝘀

– Helen Highway near Elkmont

– Highway 115 East near 4300 Block

– Highway 129 North near Pardue Circle

– (Flooding) South Main Street (Cleveland) near Campbell Street

– (Flooding) Quillian Street between Green Street and Boulevard Street

– Cottontail Trail

– Highway 129 South near the county line

– Ridge Road near 220 block

– Robert Jarrard Road near 700 block

– Hilltop Street near 300 block

– Jackson Circle near Sherrell Drive

– Tolhurst Road

– Pine Hill Drive at Honeycomb Terrance

– Blumen Weg near Dandy Lane

– Carrie Cox Drive near 110 block

– (Flooding) 115 W near Shoal Creek Church

– (Flooding) Highway 115 W near 5200 block

– (Flooding) East Kytle near 190 block

Scott Justus, Assistant Superintendent of White County Schools advised early Thursday morning that  White County High School will be closed today (Thursday) due to no power at the school. Busses will not pick up High School Students because of the closing. Justus said, all other schools have power and will be in session today (Thursday).

Barbara Overton, White County Senior Center Director reported that the  White County Senior Center will be closed today (Thursday).  Overton said staff will be working to reach out to clients and volunteers.   There will be no on-site or home-delivered meal service on Thursday from the Senior Center.
The White County Chamber of Commerce Business Block Party, scheduled for Thursday at Freedom Park has been postponed until Thursday, May 16th.