More rain in store for Georgia as Lake Lanier nears record

Two men in a boat explore a flooded business near along Copper Creek Monday, Dec. 28, 2015, in Calhoun, Ga. Heavy rain caused flooding in parts of the state.

ATLANTA - More rain is headed to Georgia, soaking already saturated soil and prompting the closure of several parks and boat ramps around Lake Lanier, authorities said.

Rain is expected to develop early Wednesday, with the heaviest amounts expected over north Georgia, the National Weather Service is projecting.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is closing at least a half-dozen parks and nine boat ramps around the lake, which is nearing a record level at 1,074.3 feet, The Times newspaper of Gainesville reported. The lake's record high level is 1,077.15 feet, set in April 1964, the newspaper quoted Corps spokeswoman Lisa Parker as saying.

An additional 1 to 2 inches of rain is expected over much of north Georgia with Wednesday's rain, forecasters said. A flood watch covers north Georgia, including all of metro Atlanta, until 7 a.m. Thursday.

In Lawrenceville, just northeast of Atlanta, city officials announced the cancellation of the community's New Year's Eve celebration on the Lawrenceville Square due to predictions of inclement weather.

Parts of west Georgia and north Georgia have been especially hard hit by flooding. In Gordon County, about 60 miles northwest of Atlanta, divers on Monday recovered the body of a man whose car was swept away by floodwaters. Authorities believe the man was driving Saturday afternoon when floodwaters overtook his car, Gordon County sheriff's Chief Deputy Robert Paris said.

The rainy weather is expected to give way to much colder temperatures in Georgia by New Year's Day, forecasters say.

By early Saturday morning, low temperatures are expected to be around 32 degrees in Atlanta and 25 degrees in Blairsville.

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