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Monday, March 5, 2012 - 4:05am

Storm Damage Closes Paulding Airport

The Paulding Northwest Regional Airport is closed indefinitely after severe weather mangled 19 aircraft and left the hangar in shreds.

Airport director Blake Swafford estimated up to $7 million in damage to the buildings and the airplanes. He said airport officials couldn't get into the airport's main building because of structural damage.

He said about two-thirds of the corporate and leisure aircraft at the airport are totaled, with some flipped upside down on the tarmac.

No one was at the airport when the storm hit Friday night.

Poole Elementary Reopening

School officials said an elementary school damaged when a tornado tore through Paulding County say the building is safe, and the school will reopen Monday morning.

Students are expected to return to Poole Elementary School, where part of the roof was ripped off and a wall was damaged when the twister swept through Friday night.

At least 30 Georgia homes were destroyed and another 189 houses in the state were damaged by recent storms.

The Georgia Emergency Management Agency reported the numbers as crews continue to assess damage from Friday's storms.

The National Weather Service has confirmed at least three tornadoes in Georgia.

They included an EF-3 tornado with winds of 165 mph in Haralson and Paulding counties; another EF-3 twister with winds of 140 mph in Lowndes and Lanier counties in south Georgia; and an EF-1 tornado in Cobb County, north of Atlanta.

Friday's violent storms touched down in at least a dozen states, killing 19 people in five states. One of those was 83-year-old Patricia Barnette in Alpharetta, killed when she tried to seek shelter in a storm drain and was washed away by the downpour.