Alabama Power: Over 156K customers lost power after severe storms

    Heavy winds lifted part of the roof off two Riverside apartment complex units. (Photo courtesy of Jared Brannon)

    Heavy storms that rolled through East Alabama and Birmingham Thursday afternoon caused widespread damage, resulting in one fatality.

    In Riverside, severe storms lifted off part of the roof on two Riverbend Apartments units.

    ABC 33/40's Andrew Donley says apartment residents are unaware of any injuries.

    A tree fell on an elderly Ensley man's home, his granddaughter tells ABC 33/40's Patrick Thomas.

    As of 9 p.m., Alabama Power had reduced the number of power outages from 156,000 to 83,000 , the company confirmed via twitter. Alabama Power crews initially reported 200 downed power and 300 broken poles.

    Alabama Power is urging those who spot downed lines to stay away from them. If you have a downed line in your area, please report it to Alabama Power at (800) 888-2726.

    The National Weather Service (NWS) in Birmingham extended a severe thunderstorm watch for Autauga, Barbour, Bullock, Chambers, Chilton, Coosa, Elmore, Lee, Lowndes, Macon, Montgomery, Pike, Russell, and Tallapoosa counties, to go along with the other Central Alabama counties of Blount, Calhoun, Cherokee, Clay, Cleburne, Etowah, Jefferson, Randolph, Shelby, St. Clair, Talladega, Walker, Winston until 7 p.m. Thursday.

    NWS Huntsville's severe thunderstorm watch for Colbert, Cullman, DeKalb, Franklin, Jackson, Lauderdale, Lawrence, Limestone, Madison, Marshall, and Morgan counties was also in effect until 7 p.m.

    Check out the latest watches, warnings, and weather updates on the Weather Blog and keep track on storms in real time via the ABC 33/40 Live Radar.

    ABC 33/40's Chief Meteorologist James Spann will be providing live updates on air and online until the severe weather threat subsides.

    If you can safely take a picture of damage in your area, please share it with us via or by clicking on "See It, Send It" within the ABC 33/40.

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