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    Damaging storms to bring isolated tornado risk to Midwest

    By Faith Eherts, AccuWeather meteorologist
    August 17, 2017, 4:11:05 PM EDT

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    A storm system will continue its trek eastward and raise the risk of severe thunderstorms in the Great Lakes and Ohio Valley Thursday afternoon and evening.

    Rounds of heavy rain and thunderstorms pummeled the Central states on Tuesday and Wednesday, with widespread instances of flooded roads and many reports of strong winds and hail.

    Tornadoes were spawned in western Nebraska and Minnesota. A tornado or waterspout could be produced in a small number of the strongest storms on Thursday.

    “Storms will regain strength again on Thursday afternoon and evening across portions of the Ohio Valley and central Great Lakes,” AccuWeather Meteorologist Kyle Elliott said. “The primary hazard from the strongest storms on both days will be damaging winds, but an isolated tornado or two cannot be ruled out.”

    Static Midwest Severe Thursday Evening

    Much of Indiana, Ohio, Michigan, northern Kentucky and southwestern Ontario will be in the line of fire.

    “The storms can cause dangerous conditions for motorists traveling at high speed on Interstates 65, 69, 70, 71, 75, 77, 80 and 90, as well as lead to downed trees and power lines,” warned Elliott.

    Any storm that fires will be capable of dropping several inches of rain in a short amount of time.

    Residents who live in flood-prone areas should take precautions against property damage due to flooding and avoid flooded roadways.

    "Some storms could survive and remain locally severe well into Thursday night and reach parts of western New York, Pennsylvania and West Virginia," according to AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Alex Sosnowski.

    Everyone should keep up-to-date on local watches and warnings and find shelter in a sturdy structure at the first sign of threatening weather. Remember, when thunder roars, go indoors.

    People should keep a weather radio or charged cell phone on full volume nearby with weather alerts enabled in order to be aware of local overnight warnings.

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    "The risk of heavy, gusty and locally severe storms will be renewed in part of the mid-Atlantic states on Friday," Sosnowski said.

    In the Central states, dry weather behind these storms may unfortunately be short-lived.

    “Another storm system may bring a renewed threat for severe weather to the central U.S. on Friday, hampering cleanup efforts and preventing streams and creeks from receding,” Elliot said.

    Static Severe Friday Plains

    The risk of severe storms on Friday will extend from southern Minnesota to Oklahoma and perhaps as far south as northwestern Texas.

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