Severe storms hit Louisville

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News 12 at 6:00, May 11, 2007

LOUISVILLE, Ga. --- It's not the Mother's Day many here in Louisville may have pictured. The scenery here on U.S.1, widespread destruction and damage after a severe storm hits early Sunday morning.

"This went on for about five minutes. You just couldn't see anything. Things started flying. And the only thing I could think of it was a twister," Pete Perez said.

Some said the only thing they could see was a wall of rain, and it was over fast

"I've been through hurricanes. I'm ready to go back to hurricanes. These tornados are just...ya'll can have them," Perez said.

The damaging winds blew power lines and traffic signs down, and uprooted trees. Thomas Jefferson Academy was hit too. You can see where the roof of the baseball press box was thrown right into the trees. And debris, scattered all over the school grounds. The storm also ripped through the golf course located right behind the school. And you can see where it snapped the trees right in half.

"It is a very bad time that we are suffering," Praful Laliwala said.

Praful Laliwala is the manager at the Allenwood Motel and he said he woke up to the doors rattling. But when he walked outside, well, it was a whole different picture. Several trees and power lines fell on the motel roof, and their was interior damage too.

"I'm here 29 years, this motel. But never happened like this before," Laliwala said.

Georgia Power crews hit the streets in Louisville trying to restore power to more than a thousand people still in the dark. It's just one part of a clean-up effort that will go on for weeks to come.

The Red Cross has set up a shelter at the Louisville United Methodist Church on West Seventh Street. Victims can contact the Red Cross directly at 706-724-8481.

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