The National Weather Service has placed much of Georgia under a high risk of severe weather through Friday morning. A so-called "high risk" warning means the potential exists for powerful storms, tornadoes, large hail, heavy rainfall and damaging winds.
A quarter-inch of rain fell between 4 and 5 a.m. today at Lee Gilmer Memorial Airport in Gainesville as a line of strong storms moved through north and central Georgia, according to the weather service Web site.
Today's forecast calls for showers and thunderstorms, some of which could be severe. Winds could gust as high as 20 mph. The chance of rain and storms continues through Friday morning, when skies should begin to clear. The weather service says 1 to 3 inches of rain could fall.
The rain will be continued good news for Lake Lanier, where the lake level continues to rise. At 7 a.m., the level was 1060.92 feet, just over 10 feet below full pool.
Residents are urged to review severe weather safety rules and to listen to media outlets and National Weather Service radio for possible watches, warnings and statements.
The line of storms that moved through Northeast Georgia overnight also caused problems elsewhere in Georgia.
Storm warnings were issued before daybreak for Upson, Talbot, Putnam, Hancock, Baldwin, Jones, Meriwether and Harris counties. Only the warning for Putnam, Hancock, Baldwin and Jones counties remained in effect at 6 a.m.
Southwest Georgia remains under a tornado watch through midafternoon and severe thunderstorms are forecast for most of the state.
National Weather Service meteorologist Jessica Fieux said Thursday there were reports of nickel-sized hail in the metro Atlanta towns of Conyers and Duluth and also in Monroe County.
Heavy rains around Waycross brought a forecast of moderate flooding along the Satilla River. The weather service said at Waycross the river is expected to rise to 18.2 feet after midnight. Flood stage is 16 feet.
There also is a forecast of mostly minor flooding along many other rivers and streams in the state.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.