Storm clouds speed through Northwest D.C. A severe band of storms is making its way through the region this morning.
WAMU's David Schultz traveled Northern Montgomery County, Md., a rural area that was one of the hardest hit by the storms Thursday. Besides the downed trees, things had pretty much returned to normal by 4 p.m., he says. Now the issue is flooding. The National Weather Service is predicting the Conococheague Creek in far western Maryland will rise above its flood stage Thursday evening.
In Maryland, officials in Montgomery county are trying to determine whether tornadoes downed trees and power lines near Poolesville and Barnesville. Most of the nearly 2,600 reported outages Thursday morning were in Montgomery, Baltimore and Carroll counties. In Frederick County Thursday, two motorists were rescued from cars that stalled on flooded roads.
The Weather Service says, overall, these storms dumped more than three inches of rain on that part of Maryland.
Residents say a funnel cloud passed over Nokesville, in Prince William County, damaging a local grocery store and several homes.
Virginia emergency management officials have reduced the number of people killed in the storms to five from eight. Four of the deaths were in Washington County. A spokesperson for the Virginia Department of Emergency Management says the inaccurate reports were the result of communication problems with officials on the scene.
Gov. Bob McDonnell declared a state of emergency Thursday, which authorizes state agencies to assist local authorities in response and recovery after a disaster.
Dozens of tornadoes swept through the South, killing more than 200 people. NPR reports that as many as a million people were without power in Alabama, and 2,000 National Guard troops were activated and searching for people who were still missing. Videos and satellite images capture the power of the storms as they happened.
Search for current conditions and alerts for Virginia, Maryland and D.C. from the National Weather Service.
A tornado watch expired for the entire D.C. region at 3 p.m.