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Thunderstorms rumble across eastern U.S.

May 27, 2009 at 9:17 AM

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla., May 27 (UPI) -- Thunderstorms were predicted to move across the eastern United States for the next few days, bringing the threat of flash flooding, forecasters said Wednesday.

Meanwhile, a developing low pressure center approaching North Carolina's Outer Banks could gain some tropical storm characteristics as it pushed northward Wednesday, meteorologists at AccuWeather.com said, forecasting downpours, gusty winds and rough surf.

Weather in the Midwest remained stormy through Wednesday, while a storm-bearing system in the Southeast was forecast to remain active until Thursday, forecasters said.

Flooding forced road closures in North Carolina, Virginia and Washington, D.C., Tuesday. In the Midwest, officials said heavy rain triggered a 40-foot mudslide engulfing a street in Edwardsville, Ill., Monday, flooding basements and contributing to wall collapses.

Florida Power and Light officials said all but two homes have had their power restored after a thunderstorm knocked out service to thousands of homes and businesses in Broward County Tuesday, the South Florida Sun-Sentinel reported Wednesday.

Florida Gov. Charlie Crist has requested a federal disaster declaration, which local officials in the Daytona Beach area said should make federal assistance available for the underinsured and help local governments combat an expected mosquito outbreak and rebuild damaged infrastructure, The Orlando Sentinel said.

"I'm confident we can get the relief, and hopefully by the end of the week, get $50 million for Florida," Crist said.

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