Extremely Dangerous Tornado Situation into Wednesday

April 26, 2011; 11:30 PM ET
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An extremely dangerous outbreak of tornadoes will endanger many lives and property from northeastern Texas into Arkansas, northern Louisiana, northwestern Mississippi and western Tennessee into Wednesday.

These are the same areas that were just hit by tornadoes Monday afternoon and night, and tonight's outbreak is expected to be worse than Monday's. Large, long-track tornadoes are a major concern.

As of 11:30 p.m. EDT, there have been 34 tornado sightings from northeastern Texas to western Kentucky and Mississippi. These tornadoes have caused extensive damage in Arkansas, Mississippi and Texas.

A tractor trailer was blown off of Highway 165 near Coy, Ark. Cars were reported off the highway and trees were snapped near Marshall, Texas. The Groesbeck, Texas fire station was damaged by a tornado as well. Damage in other tornadoes includes structural damage, downed power lines and trees.

"It's a very dangerous day," said AccuWeather.com Senior Meteorologist Henry Margusity. "It's the kind of day where tornadoes could cause massive destruction."

The violent thunderstorms are racing into the western Tennessee Valley, then will shift farther east through the Tennessee and Ohio Valleys Wednesday into Wednesday night.

The threat Wednesday includes Meridian, Miss., Birmingham and Huntsville, Ala., and Nashville and Knoxville, Tenn.

There is concern that some of the tornadoes into Wednesday will be strong (EF3 tornado ranking or higher) and long-tracking.

These types of tornadoes have the potential to produce damage similar to what was endured at St. Louis' Lambert Field on Friday evening or across North Carolina two Saturdays ago.

"People should review tornado safety guidelines and take any [severe thunderstorm or tornado] watches and warnings very seriously," stressed Kottlowski.

Those residents being threatened by the tornadoes at night should take extra precautions to ensure they do not sleep through vital tornado sirens or warnings.

Tornadoes are not the only concern through Wednesday. Many of the strongest thunderstorms will unleash strong winds, flooding downpours and hail up to the size of softballs.

Flash flooding kills more people in the U.S. every year than tornadoes do, and most of the deaths happen when people attempt to drive across a roadway covered with water.

Never attempt to cross a flooded roadway. Always turn around and find an alternate route.

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