Severe Weather Pittsburgh to Atlanta, Tallahassee

By , Senior Meteorologist
April 11, 2013; 9:05 PM ET
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Thunderstorms into Thursday night, some which can be severe at the local level, will reach from part of the Ohio Valley to the Gulf Coast and southern Atlantic Seaboard.

The storms will bring isolated incidents where lives and property are threatened. A more general, but less critical concern is the potential for travel disruptions and foiled plans. As the storms pass through, they can halt incoming and departing flights for a time at major airports and smaller connecting hubs.

The greatest potential with the storms is for damaging wind gusts, large hail, flash flooding and frequent lightning strikes.

Alert: 3:00 p.m. CDT Thursday: Thunderstorms firing ahead of the squall line over eastern Alabama and western Georgia could be the new threat area for tornadoes into Thursday night.

A tornado touched down near Liberty, Miss., before 1:00 p.m. EDT Thursday. One fatality has been confirmed with an injury reported along Highway 493, 4 miles northwest of Liberty, Miss.

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A few of the strongest storms can produce fast-moving tornadoes. The area of greatest tornado risk during the first part Thursday night will be across eastern Tennessee, eastern Alabama and much of Georgia.

The forward speed of the storms can reach 40 mph or more and could result in little advance warning. Seek shelter immediately if a tornado warning is issued or at the first notice of an approaching thunderstorm.

The storms are likely to down trees and cause sporadic power outages. Some roadways in urban and rural locations could be overwhelmed with water.

As cooler air collapses southward in the mid-Atlantic and colder air crosses the Mississippi River, the risk for severe thunderstorms Thursday night will reach from Pittsburgh, Pa., to Atlanta, Ga. and Tallahassee, Fla.

The timing for the storms at Augusta, where the Masters Tournament is taking place through the weekend is from late Thursday into Friday morning. There is a chance the storms bring hail and damaging wind to the area, along with the risk of frequent lightning strikes.

Other major metro areas that could be impacted by one or more storms Thursday night include Charleston, W.Va., London, Ky., Chattanooga, Tenn., Augusta, Ga., Charlotte, N.C., Columbia, S.C., Dothan, Ala., and Tallahassee, Fla.

During Friday, prior to the arrival of the cooler air from the west, one last surge of warm, humid air could lead to locally severe thunderstorms from part of Delmarva to eastern North Carolina.

Most likely, the wedge of cooler air that arrived from New England Wednesday night will keep violent storms away from New York City, Philadelphia and Baltimore during Thursday night and Friday. However, there is a risk of heavy rain and flooding for a time Friday.


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