Middle Georgia residents should stay alert, with the possibility of damaging winds and tornadoes through Wednesday night.
Much of Middle Georgia remains under tornado watch until 8 p.m.
The potential remains strong for the severe weather through the night, said Houston County EMA Director Jimmy Williams late Wednesday afternoon.
Another wave of severe storms is expected to arrive in Middle Georgia between 9 p.m. Wednesday and 1 a.m. Thursday.
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The midstate was on alert for most of the afternoon.
Schools, government offices and some businesses closed Wednesday.
Robins Air Force Base supervisors were given the green light Wednesday afternoon to grant liberal leave based on mission requirements and individual needs with the continued threat of severe weather, according to a base Facebook post.
Houston County had braced for strong winds capable of downing trees, disrupting power and spawning tornadoes.
A residence caught fire from a lightning strike at 217 Silver Birch Road late Wednesday afternoon in Houston County. No other major storm damage was reported.
No shelters were opened in unincorporated Houston County, but Warner Robins and Perry opened their City Halls as shelters.
Dublin City Hall and the Laurens County Courthouse opened their doors for those seeking shelter, as did the Salvation Army of Central Georgia in Macon.
In Bibb County, a house on Overlook Road was struck by lightning, but there was little damage and no one was injured.
Though the National Weather Service indicated a large, potentially destructive tornado was spotted near Americus about 1:30 p.m., the county’s EMA director said about 2:45 p.m. that there were no reports of injuries but damage reports were trickling in.
“We don’t have a real good picture of it yet,” Sumter County EMA Director Nigel Poole said.
Attempts to reach Poole later in the day were unsuccessful.
The same tornado reported in Sumter County traveled northeast into Dooly County, where it blew off the top of a two-story house in Vienna.
No one was injured when the Franklin Road home was damaged, said Gale Anderson, secretary for Dooly County EMA.
As the storm moved east to Pulaski County, a horse died after being struck by lightning.
Other than some downed trees, no damage was reported there, EMA Director Leslie Sewell said.
"I'm very surprised,” Sewell said. "We were sitting dead on ready."
The National Weather Service confirmed a tornado touched down in Dodge County, where a half dozen houses on Scarborough-Owens Road were damaged, EMA Director Stanley Stephens said. The extent of the damage was unclear, but there were no reported injuries.
Rescue crews were at first hindered by live wires across the road, heavy rain, strong winds and frequent lightning, but they returned to Scarborough-Owens Road about 5 p.m. to assess the damage and cover the houses with tarps.
Laurens County didn’t escape the storm’s wrath either.
Fire Chief Don Bryant said there was “significant damage in the southern part of our county,” particularly in the area of Baker Church and James Evans roads, just southeast of Rentz, where there was a possible tornado.
“We did have some minor injuries,” Bryant said, adding that a person in a mobile home was hurt as well as a few others.
Houses, mobile homes and barns also took a hit from the weather.
Two possible tornadoes passed near Cordele, one at 2 p.m. and another at 4 p.m., according to a news release from the Crisp County Sheriff’s Office.
The second wave of storms brought lots of hail, from quarter-sized to golf ball-sized, but there wasn’t much damage reported, the release said.
Crisp County emergency officials remain on high alert.