ATLANTA (WXIA) -- According to theStorm Prediction Center, the far northern portion of Georgia is listed as being under a "moderate risk" for severe thunderstorms through tonight.

The remainder ofNorth Georgia-- including all of metro Atlanta --is under a "slight risk" for severe weather Wednesday and Wednesday night.

Areas to the west -- in northern Alabama and Mississippi are now under a tornado watch through 10 p.m. Eastern time. A second tornado watch is in effect for much of Tennessee. 11Alive Chief Meteorologist Mike Francis says the storms tied to this line are expected to get to north Georgia after dark Wednesday.

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Severe thunderstorms and tornadoes have moved through the nation's heartland since Tuesday, leaving damage and destruction intheir wake. The death toll from the storms is at9, with more than 100 people injured.

NBC News says 6 of the deaths came from a possible tornado overnight in the southern Illinois town of Harrisburg that flattened between 35 and 40 homes.One otherdeath came from a suspected tornado that hit a trailer park near the southwest Missouri town of Buffalo. About a dozen people were hurt there. Two others died in the Cassville and Puxico areas of Missouri.

The injuries were reported from a suspected tornado in Harveyville, Kan., NBC News said.

Other hard hit areas included the tourist city of Branson, Mo.

By 10:30 a.m. Wednesday, tornado watches had been issued for parts of Arkansas, Missouri, Tennessee, Kentucky and Ohio. Tornado warnings stretched along a line of storms running from northwestern Arkansasa to southern Ohio.

Storms are expected to develop further south and east over the course of the day, moving deeper into the moderate risk area noted by the SPC, of Tennessee, and into Mississippi, Alabama and Georgia by Wednesday night. The area of slight risk for severe storms stretches as far east as the Atlantic coast of Virginia and the Carolinas.

11Alive Meteorologist Chesley McNeil says this is the first round of severe weather we can expect this week. He says another round of severe weather -- possibly more intense -- could be expected inmetro Atlanta late Friday or early Saturday.

Stay with 11Alive and for the latest on severe weather throughout the week and into the weekend.

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