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Tornado Sweeps Through East Cobb

Friday storms reportedly caused heavy damage to the Home Depot store and shut down Roswell Road near East Cobb Park.

Updated: 10:45 p.m. Friday 

A powerful storm containing a tornado swept through East Cobb Friday night, knocking out power and causing damage in the area, according to television reports and citizens. 

There were no confirmed reports of a tornado touching down in East Cobb, but the at the Providence Square Shopping Center was seriously damaged. There were reports of heavy damage around that prompted Cobb Police to shut down Roswell Road between Old Canton Road and Providence Road.

Terry Frost, an East Cobb Patch Facebook follower, wrote at 10:45 p.m. Friday that "HD got hit fairly hard, I was inside....tomorrow will look bad."

On Twitter, East Cobber Brian Benvie (@BBenvie) posted at 10:17 p.m.: "just saw trees down and crushed car Providence rd and Roswell rd."

Also on Twitter, East Cobb resident Tim McMillen (@gypsytimmy) posted around 10:05 p.m.: "major damage at park and Providence rd. Just drove by it."

A severe thunderstorm that reportedly included a tornado touching down in the Dallas area earlier Friday evening moved into the Kennesaw and north Marietta areas before arriving in East Cobb shortly after 9 p.m. 

WSB-TV reported that storm damage was called in along the Sewell Mill Road area near Old Canton Road. 

The station was urging citizens living in the , , Tritt and school areas to take cover.

A Twitter update from @Atlanta_Traffic around 9:30 p.m. also indicated reports of damage in those areas and around East Cobb Park. 

An East Cobb Patch follower @RunJanisRun Tweeted at 10 p.m. that "Our friend was working at home depot on roswell Ed in east Cobb and all employees hit the deck & are safe. Damage to the nursery and sign."

She reported that power was out at her home near Walton, then happily Tweeted at 10:38 p.m.: "Woo hooo power!"

Another East Cobber on Twitter, @etcpolitics, Tweeted that "We lost power. But the other side of street still has it."

Other unconfirmed reports indicate that power went out around Roswell and Old Canton Roads, and that trees went down around Robinson Road. 

East Cobb Patch followers on Facebook reported that they avoided the storm for the most part, in areas including Mabry Road, the area, Sandy Plains/Wesley Chapel roads, the Parkaire Kroger, Columns Drive and Old Canton/Holly Springs. 

Said East Cobb resident Sidney Dikeman (@sidneydikeman) on Twitter: "If Glen [WSB-TV meteorologist Glenn Burns] hadn't said it was on top of us, I would have thought we were having a gentle Spring rain."

One of East Cobb's most famous citizens, Pope graduate and Houston Texans quarterback T.J. Yates, also Tweeted a sigh of relief: "Hoping everybody in Cobb Co. is safe after that tornado, dodged a bullet it was only a few miles from the house #duckandcover."

After the storm left East Cobb, the National Weather Service issued a tornado watch for most of the Atlanta area and north Georgia until 5 a.m. Saturday. 

Outdoor activities for Saturday may be affected by the weather. The East Marietta National Little League has postponed Saturday's parade and opening ceremonies until next Saturday, March 10. 

If you hear or know of any damage or reports of damage -- downed trees, continuing power outages, as well as cancellations or postponements due the weather -- that we can add to this report, please e-mail wendy.parker@patch.com, post a comment on our Facebook page or our Twitter account.

We will have more on the aftermath of the storm on Saturday. 

Original report, posted at 6:47 p.m.

Cobb County and most of north Georgia are under a tornado watch until 1 a.m. Saturday. 

The National Weather Service issued the alert late Friday afternoon for Cobb, all metro Atlanta and an area stretching from Carroll County to the Columbus area and eastward across Gainesville and northeast Georgia.

Thunderstorms could be severe and produce heavy rainfull throughout Friday evening and overnight. 

Areas of the Midwest and Deep South have been battered by tornadoes this week, including severe storms that ripped through Indiana, Kentucky and Tennessee Friday afternoon.

At least three people were killed in southern Indiana, not far from Louisville, with a law enforcement official declaring the town of Marysville, Ind. "completely gone."

The line of storms approaching Georgia also has done serious damage in Alabama, where students at a high school near Huntsville huddled for safety

The Weather Channel estimates that more than 50 tornadoes have been reported on Friday, with at least six deaths. 

The National Weather Service is forecasting rain between an inch to two inches may be possible in north Georgia during the tornado watch period. 

Low temperatures will reach into the low 50s overnight, with winds between 10 to 15 mph and gusts as high as 25 mph possible. 

Saturday will also be rainy, with the best chance of showers before 1 p.m. Skies will be mostly cloudy with high temperatures expected in the high 50s. 

Saturday night will feel more like winter, with lows in the mid 30s.

Wendy Parker March 03, 2012 at 04:14 AM
We're hearing the Timber Ridge area was in the path of the storm, but we'll try to update that information as we get it.
Dennis March 03, 2012 at 01:03 PM
I live just off of Timber Ridge, damage free as far as I can tell. Drove by Roswell Rd @ Piedmont just after storm last night and they got hit hard. Wonder if the occupants of car crushed by tree are ok.
joy March 03, 2012 at 01:13 PM
What a friggin nightmare - sirens, reportage all night long. Mother nature is certainly entertaining another interesting storm season
M. Stone March 03, 2012 at 01:22 PM
There was an enthusiastic full house at Walton High School's theater last night for the performance of the spring musical, "Anything Goes!" Just as the curtain rose on the second act, the performance was halted and the entire audience and cast were urged to move into the interior of the building to "duck and cover" under desks. Luckily no harm resulted at the school as the tornado swept by, damaging nearby Sewell Mill and Providence Road sites. The rest of the evening's performance was cancelled. Kudos to the school's administration for orderly and safe procedures on a night we'll long remember!
AJ March 03, 2012 at 02:44 PM
I'm late in posting, but we're near TR elementary and it was fairly calm. We got lucky.

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