Across Georgia

Atlanta passes 50-year record in annual rain


ATLANTA --- Heavy rains have made 2009 the wettest year in about half a century for Atlanta.

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports that the city's official rain gauge at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport recorded 1.89 inches of rain Friday. That pushed the city's total rainfall for the year to 66.86 inches.

The 2009 rainfall level is surpassed only by 71.18 inches recorded in 1948 and 67.71 inches in 1929. The normal annual rainfall in Atlanta is 50.20 inches.

The metro area is expected to stay dry for the next few days with the National Weather Service next predicting rain in the middle of the week.

Fire damages mayor's home in Savannah

SAVANNAH --- Savannah's mayor had a close call when his home caught fire.

WTOC-TV reports that Mayor Otis Johnson's longtime girlfriend Shevon Carr had just gotten home and saw the fire. She woke the mayor, who was taking a nap when the fire started about 5:30 p.m. Friday.

They called 911 from a neighbor's house but firefighters were already en route, having been notified by the alarm system.

After the blaze was out, the mayor tried to salvage whatever he could, but almost everything was damaged by smoke or water.

He plans to live in another home he owns until the burned home is repaired.

Initial indications are that the fire might have started in the heating and air system.