Heavy Rain Batters D.C. Area; Power Outages, Downed Trees Reported

Heavy rain battered the D.C. area Wednesday, leading to power outages and sending a tree crashing into a Maryland apartment building.

A flood watch that began at 10 a.m. Wednesday expired at 8 p.m. for D.C. and its surrounding counties.

A tree fell down in the right lane of southbound Interstate 395 just north of King Street Wednesday evening, according to Virginia State Police.

In Laurel, a tree crashed into a three-story apartment building in the 9100 block of Stebbing Way, causing structural damage.

At the time, a resident of a third-floor apartment was holding his infant son in the master bedroom, reported News4's Jackie Bensen. They were not hurt.

Authorities said two other people sustained minor injuries and were evaluated on the scene.

Five apartments are uninhabitable due to extensive damage, according to the Howard County Department of Fire and Rescue Services. More than 20 people have been displaced; the American Red Cross is providing assistance.

Crews are on the scene to reinforce the building, authorities said. 

A tree was also reported down near St. John's College High School.

Power companies are rapidly restoring power after a high of about 3,000 outages in the region Wednesday afternoon.

Tornado warnings issued earlier for D.C. and parts of Maryland and Virginia have either expired or been canceled.

A tornado warning for Howard County, Maryland, expired at 1:30 p.m. It was canceled for parts of Prince George's and Anne Arundel counties a few minutes earlier. An earlier tornado warning was canceled for the D.C. area around 12:45 p.m.

The rain began falling across northern Virginia early Wednesday and raced north, arriving inside the Beltway at midday.

More than an inch of rain had already fallen in some areas by midday; the region could get aother inch before it's all over.

Storm Team 4 Meteorologist Chuck Bell warned drivers to stay off the roads when the rain is heaviest.

A combination of strong winds and heavy rains could cause scattered power outages.

Thursday there is a chance of afternoon showers. Dry, sunny and more October-like weather will return for the weekend.

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