A storm system responsible for severe weather over the Central states at midweek will threaten lives and property in parts of North Carolina and Virginia into Friday evening.
On Friday evening, two tornadoes were reported in North Carolina. A tornado was reported to have touched down in Castoria, Greene County, N.C., according to the county fire department. Another tornado was reported near Aventon, Halifax County, N.C., according to the 911 call center.
Some of the cities most likely to see this activity include Norfolk, Virginia Beach and Richmond, Va., and Raleigh, Fayetteville, Wilmington and Greenville, N.C.
The atmosphere will become primed for violent thunderstorm activity to move through Friday afternoon and evening from southwest to northeast.
The greatest threats from these thunderstorms will be damaging winds in excess of 60 mph, large hail and blinding downpours.
However, a few of the storms have the potential to produce tornadoes.
People in the alert area should stay on top of warnings as they are issued and seek shelter if a warning is issue for their location.
Wind gusts to 60 mph and large hail will not occur in every location due to the localized nature of severe thunderstorms. However, winds this strong can down trees and power lines, leading to sporadic electricity outages. Large hail can damage vegetation and dent vehicles.
If you plan to be out and about during the afternoon and evening, be on the lookout for rapidly changing skies. These thunderstorms will move quickly, and the weather can go from good to very poor in only 15-20 minutes.
Be sure to understand the difference between a watch and a warning. A watch means that an area is being monitored for dangerous weather. A warning means that dangerous weather is imminent.
Keep in mind that lightning is one of Mother Nature's most dangerous killers. If you can hear thunder, you are close enough to the storm to be struck by lightning, even if the sun is still shining.
Senior Meteorologist Alex Sosnowski contributed content to this story.
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