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Storms pelt Pennsylvania with hail and heavy rain, flooding roads and triggering alarms

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HARRISBURG, Pennsylvania — Wicked thunderstorms pelted central Pennsylvania with pea-sized hail, turned roadways into rivers and sent residents fleeing to their basement with menacing clouds, lightning and a tornado warning.

Sirens blared the warning in Cumberland and Perry counties, where apocalyptic gray clouds hung low over silos and rolling plains. A Harrisburg school board meeting was halted Monday night as people scurried to shelter below ground.

No tornadoes were reported.

Several thousand people remained in the dark Tuesday. Hail gave lawns the look of winter and heavy rains quickly overwhelmed roads.

Firefighters in Altoona used long, hooked poles to unclog drains as swollen streets threatened to spill flood waters into nearby businesses. In State College, more than a foot of water halted cars on a main artery near Penn State's campus.

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