Several atmospheric ingredients are coming together for strong and potentially damaging thunderstorms to track through portions of the mid-Atlantic, Carolinas and New England.
Temperatures throughout much of the mid-Atlantic and Carolinas climbed into the 90s Tuesday afternoon. This heat combined with a cold front slicing into very moist air already in place to set the stage for a stormy Tuesday evening for millions.
A secondary cool front was also triggering nasty storms in Massachusetts and southern New England into Tuesday evening, after storms clobbered parts of Maine and New Hampshire during the midday.
Numerous thunderstorms will ignite in the warm and moist air this evening.
Some of the storms will become severe with the primary threat being damaging winds in excess of 65 mph. Heavy downpours will also be likely with many of these storms.
While slow travel and pooling on roadways may result from the heavy rains, the storms are being welcomed by many areas experiencing abnormally dry conditions.
Although gusty winds will be the biggest threat, the strongest storms will also be capable of producing hail. It is not completely out of the question that an isolated tornado could briefly develop as well.
Parts of North Carolina have already seen wind gusts to 60 mph, downed trees throughout several counties and power outages.
Locations in the path of these severe storms include areas from Norfolk, Va. to the Outer Banks and south to Wilmington, N.C.
Farther interior, Charlotte, N.C. to Columbia, S.C. are still at risk later on this evening.
Most thunderstorms will weaken after sunset with the loss of daytime heating. However, one or more clusters of storms can keep rolling along well into the night in the Deep South and offshore of New England.
People in the path of the storms should continue to check back with AccuWeather.com throughout the evening for the latest information on watches and warnings, along with radar imagery.
As the cold front pushes through the mid-Atlantic on Wednesday morning, less humid air will filter into the region. However, the break from the humidity will be short-lived as the humid air returns for the end of the week.
Some of the warmest weather of the year will continue across Alaska over the next few days, challenging more records.
Join us on Thursday for AccuWeather LIVE, we will discuss the debate of climate change and hurricane frequency and the top five things you need to know about summer weather.
Warmth is forecast to build over much of the eastern half of the nation by July, with Alaska of all places helping out.
A brief synopsis of the top five worst weather events of last summer.
The storms could affect cities from St. Louis to Evansville, Ind., Louisville, Ky., Cincinnati and Dayton, Ohio to Huntington, W.Va.
A tornado touched down at Denver International Airport as a severe weather system moved through the area.
Elizabeth City, NC (1991)
2.83" of rain in 2.5 hours.
New England (1875)
Severe coastal storm (a possible hurricane) from Cape Cod to Nova Scotia. Eastport, MA reported 57 mph winds.
Indianapolis, IN (1992)
The control tower at the airport was evacuated early in the morning during a severe thunderstorm. One-inch hailstones fell, a 62 mph wind gust occurred, and a tornado was spotted two miles northwest of the airport.