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Allison's remnants drench Georgia, Florida

Flooding in Greene County, Georgia  

ATLANTA (CNN) -- The remnants of Tropical Storm Allison left nine people dead in Florida and prompted a state of emergency in 14 Georgia counties Wednesday.

The storm has caused major damage around several Georgia cities, including Augusta, Macon, and Valdosta. It flooded roads, damaged bridges, downed trees and created power outages and potential problems with dams, the state said.

More storms are expected in the area, possibly bringing another inch of rain.

Florida authorities blamed the storm for nine deaths, including five people who drowned in heavy surf and riptides during the past week around Pensacola. In addition, rescuers continued their search Wednesday for a commercial fisherman missing and presumed dead in the waters off Escambia County, said Ann Rowe, spokeswoman for the Florida Division of Emergency Management.

 Relief information:
FEMA has set up a toll-free number for Texas flood victims to apply for disaster assistance. That number is: 800-462-9029

CNN's Sean Callebs talks with several Houston residents as they begin cleaning their waterlogged homes (June 11)

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National guard rescues victims of flooding in the Houston, Texas area (June 10)

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Hurricanes: How they form and tips on preparing for them
CNN weather forecast for Houston, Texas

Three motorists drowned in floodwaters -- two in Pensacola and one in Tallahassee -- and a man was killed in Jacksonville when a tree fell on his home, Rowe said.

In all, damage was reported in 22 Florida counties, and a tornado destroyed three homes in Madison County, she said. More than 170,000 homes in the Jacksonville area were damaged by nearly 10 inches of rain.

Allison came ashore last week near Houston, Texas. Flooding in its wake killed at least 20 people in Texas and Louisiana and did at least $1 billion of damages in Texas alone -- making it the costliest tropical storm in U.S. history.

Four critically ill patients at Houston's Memorial Hermann Hospital, which was designed not to flood, died after the power went out because of flooding. Hospital officials said Wednesday their deaths could not be blamed on the flood, however.

The storm swept then eastward across the Gulf Coast and into Florida. Rowe said Florida officials are still trying to determine how much damage the storm caused in their state.

Steve Letro, meteorologist for the National Weather Service in Jacksonville, said the precipitation has brought some relief to the area after four years of drought that has put Florida at risk for wildfires.

"What we needed was a good soaking rain," Letro said, "and this has pretty much provided that." That heavy rain would not be enough to reverse the drought, "But in the short term, it certainly helps the fire situation," he said.

State officials are keeping an eye on rising rivers, but National Weather Service meteorologist Anita Dye said the rivers were low to begin with because of the dry weather.



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