Power outages abound as severe storms threaten floods, tornados in parts of US

A deadly storm system continued to drench much of the Great Lakes and Northeast regions on Friday as authorities and residents throughout the eastern U.S. surveyed damage in the wake of widespread flooding and over a dozen tornadoes.

Flood advisories were active Friday across the Atlantic Coast from North Carolina to Maine, as well as in West Virginia and parts of New York state, according to the National Weather Service. Much of Ohio, Michigan and Kentucky were under high wind alerts as meteorologists warned of potential damage from flying debris.

By Friday morning, 1 to 3 inches of rain fell from Indiana and Ohio to Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Maryland, according to AccuWeather. Severe weather advisories were set to end throughout the afternoon as the storm continues to move north ahead of a looming cold front.

Power outages across Northeast, Gulf Coast; Flights delayed

More than 35,000 homes and businesses from Virginia to and Maine were without power on Friday morning, according to a USA TODAY database.

In the South, more than 17,000 utility customers in Louisiana reported an outage on Friday. Most of the outages were in West Feliciana, where an EF-1 tornado with winds between 86-110 mph ripped through the rural outpost just north of Baton Rouge on Wednesday.

At John F. Kennedy Airport, over 100 departing flights were delayed Friday, according to the flight tracking website FlightAware. Boston Logan International Airport and Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport had 110 and 79 delays, respectively.

Storms wreak havoc across eastern U.S. this week

The storm system this week made a dayslong journey over the Gulf Coast, southeast and Midwest regions, toppling trees, destroying homes, flooding rural and city streets and causing multiple deaths and injuries.

More than 10 inches of rain was recorded this week in parts of northern Florida, Texas and Louisiana, where flash floods inflicted large amounts of damage. The week's heavy rain also rose water levels over the tops of river banks throughout the eastern U.S., spurring multiple rescues as people became trapped in homes and cars from Florida to West Virginia.

In Specter, West Virginia, the city's public works department spent Thursday night clearing debris off streets and out of storm drains after a severe storm dumped more than 3 inches over the area, causing widespread flooding, Mayor Terry Williams said in a statement.

"This will take a few days to get everything accomplished," he said. "If you do not need to be out on the roadways, please stay safe and stay home. The roads are very slick with mud."

In Tallahassee, Florida, cars and trucks were submerged in waist-high floodwaters, videos show. A local public high school also flooded and led school officials to cancel classes Friday as they worked to clear the water. On the east coast of the state, a strong storm walloped a St. Augustine subdivision, destroying fences, overturning BBQ grills and hurling debris.

At least 14 tornadoes were recorded across the Gulf Coast from Texas to Florida this week. The worst of the storms tore though Mississippi, where 179 homes were damaged and the severe weather led to six injuries and the deaths of two women, according to the Mississippi Emergency Management Agency.

Shirley Wilson, 64, died Wednesday after the power went out north of Harperville, about 50 miles east of Jackson, Scott County coroner Hunter Wolf told the Mississippi Clarion Ledger, part of the USA TODAY Network. Wilson had a list of health complications and was on oxygen, which was disconnected when Wilson lost power. According to Wolf, there was no backup that provided access to oxygen. Wolf said authorities tried to get Wilson to a hospital, but the roads were blocked by storm debris.

Shanika Newton, 43, died in Leflore County after her car hydroplaned and landed in a flooded ditch where she drowned, said Leflore County Deputy Coroner Will Gnemi.

Weekend outlook: Strong wind, cool air to sweep eastern US

Cooler temperatures and powerful winds will spread east from the Midwest, Ohio and Tennessee valleys Friday night and Saturday, according to the National Weather Service.

Wind gusts as high as 50 mph will extend from Idaho to Maine and as far south as Georgia on Friday night, AccuWeather said. Such wind gusts could snap tree limbs and send debris flying. Meteorologists also warn that the high winds could impact air travel.

In California, a series of showers and mountain snowfall was expected to continue into Saturday as a storm system rolls in from the Pacific coast, the weather service said. Heavy rain is forecast for the coast as several inches of snow builds up across the northern Coastal Ranges, Klamath Mountains and the Sierra Nevada. As the system moves inland, cooler temperatures will push in across the state.

Contributing: Pam Dankins, Mississippi Clarion Ledger

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Storm forecast threatens swath of US with rain, floods and tornadoes