Ga. estimates $75M in insured losses from storms

ATLANTA (AP) - Authorities estimate that a series of tornadoes that struck Georgia last week inflicted $75 million in insured losses.

State Insurance and Safety Fire Commissioner Ralph Hudgens released his office's first damage estimate Monday. He said the figure will likely rise as insurance companies receive claims related to the severe weather.

The tornadoes struck Wednesday night in Georgia, killing 15 people as they moved across the state during the overnight hours.

The violent storms turned gas stations and fast food restaurants into piles of rubble, ripped homes off their foundations and took down power lines.

President Barack Obama has issued a disaster declaration for seven counties in Georgia.

Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press.