Live Blog: Damaging Storms Hit W.Va., N.C., Ky., Tenn.

July 5, 2012; 6:28 PM ET
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7:30 p.m. EDT: The complex is weakening and will likely continue to weaken over the next few hours. Despite this, strong thunderstorms are dotted across the southeast U.S., that can bring isolated damaging winds and blinding downpours. The majority of this thunderstorm activity will diminish gradually over the next several hours.

6:45 p.m. EDT: Numerous damage reports are coming out of counties across Tennessee. Two inch hail fell across Lawrence County, Tenn around 4:30 p.m. Thunderstorm winds have caused numerous downed trees and power lines in Fentress, Lawrence and Montgomery Counties. Additionally, the wind was powerful enough to blow the roof off of a home and office building in Ethridge.

4:40 p.m. EDT: Damage reports continue to be released as a result of thunderstorms. Most reports are coming out of North Carolina, Kentucky, and West Virginia.

Multiple trees and power lines are down in Catawba County, N.C.

Strong winds have resulted in trees downed in Menifee, Perry and Madison Counties, Kentucky. A 59 mph wind gust was recorded in Laurel County, Kentucky and damages include a roof blown off a tobacco warehouse and one injury after a tree fell on a man.

Trees are downed across the county in Taylorsville, West Virginia with multiple power outages reported.

1:30 p.m. EDT: Storms are taking on a bowing shape pushing across southern West Virginia, producing damaging winds. More power outages are likely, following last week's devastating storms. Occupants were trapped in a truck in north Beckley, W.Va., after trees came crashing down. These storms will progress into western Virginia and clip eastern Kentucky before reaching North Carolina and northeastern Tennessee.

Bristol, Kingsport and Johnson City, Tenn. were in the path of the storms as of 2:30 p.m. EDT.

Meanwhile, a discrete storm across western North Carolina caused wind damage earlier this afternoon. Multiple trees have been downed across Boonville, N.C., while many trees were downed and buildings have been damaged in Dobson, N.C.

12:00 p.m. EDT: A gust front with winds up to 60 mph has slammed Charleston, W. Va. Multiple trees and power lines have been downed. Downpours and frequent lightning strikes were moving southward across the metro area at this time. Strong gusty and storms will roll into Beckley, W.Va. and perhaps the Roanoke, Va. area during the afternoon.
Video of storm hitting Charleston, W. Va.

11:00 a.m. EDT: Storms have pushed into southeastern Ohio, West Virginia and western Virginia. Generally, storms have weakened for now, but with heating of the day storms will turn dangerous across eastern parts of the Ohio Valley and Appalachians into this afternoon. Southern Ohio to northern Georgia lie in the zone at risk. A few severe thunderstorms could still erupt across Michigan as well, while a secondary threat exists for later in the day across the northern Plains. (Full story below)

Television journalist Sara Shookman from Cleveland tweeted this photo of storm damage.

8:00 a.m. EDT: The cluster of thunderstorms that tore across Michigan early this morning, downing trees and power lines, is now heading southeastward across Ohio. Trees and power lines have already been downed across Cuyahoga and Lorain counties in Ohio.

The areas of highest risk for severe weather today will include Cleveland, Cincinnati, Roanoke and Charlotte.

The most widespread impact of the thunderstorms will be damaging wind gusts, threatening power outages to some areas that were hard-hit late last week. However, the strongest storms could also produce large hail and even a tornado.

All thunderstorms across the region, whether they turn severe or not could bring heavy downpours and dangerous cloud to ground lightning.

Anyone spending time outside or extending their 4th of July celebrations will want to keep an eye to the sky across the region and be alert for changing weather conditions. Heed any severe thunderstorm or tornado-related warnings by quickly finding shelter.

Setting the Stage for the Rounds of Severe Storms
Whenever warm, moist air meets cooler, drier air, the resulting boundary will often produce adverse weather. This will hold true for much of the Great Lakes and northern Plains today.

Across the southern United States, stubborn high pressure will continue to allow for lingering heat and humidity from the nation's midsection to the South and mid-Atlantic.

Farther north, Canadian air will try to work into the region but until high pressure gives way, fronts will continue to struggle to dip south into the region, and the fighting boundaries will produce potentially violent thunderstorms.


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