ATLANTA, Ga (AP) — Georgia Governor Nathan Deal plans Wednesday to visit two communities affected by deadly storms that swept through the South.
The governor plans to meet with local officials in Albany, followed by a helicopter tour to view storm damage. The National Weather Service rated a tornado that struck the city as at least an EF-2, with winds of at least 111 to 135 mph.
Deal then heads to nearby Cook County for a driving tour of storm damage in that area. Officials have said seven residents of a mobile home community in the county’s community of Adel were killed.
Governor Deal says he is prepared to extend the state’s emergency declaration if necessary, depending on what he sees during his tour. The current declaration includes 16 counties and runs through January 30th.
The storms spawned dozens of tornadoes across the region, killing 20 people in Georgia, Florida and Mississippi. Georgia alone reported 15 deaths because of the storms.
Storms costs Georgia millions
Georgia’s insurance commissioner says the deadly storms wreaked at least $100 million worth of damage on the state.
Ralph Hudgens tells local news the southwest Georgia city of Albany and associated Dougherty County suffered $40 million in damage.
Hudgens says damage estimates are likely to rise because not a lot of people had insurance.
Georgia Emergency Management Agency says 15 people were killed and 43 people were injured after a series of storms moved through southern Georgia on Saturday and Sunday.
National Weather Service survey teams continue to investigate to determine the extent of tornado damage.