Flash Flood Watch

Damaging winds, flooding to target eastern US as severe storms erupt on Election Day

By Courtney Spamer, AccuWeather meteorologist
November 06, 2018, 2:40:37 PM EST

While many will be heading to the polls for the 2018 Midterm Elections, severe thunderstorms are anticipated from Charlotte to Philadelphia on Tuesday.

  • Stronger storms have passed for voters in cities like Greensboro, North Carolina; Roanoke, Virginia; and Harrisburg. While rain will linger, voting conditions will improve through he afternoon.
  • Rain and thunderstorms in Washington D.C. and Philadelphia are anticipated to be most widespread through the middle of the day; ideal voting conditions are likely in the early evening.
  • Rain and storms are approaching Norfolk, Virginia; Raleigh and Atlantic City for the afternoon, meaning voters should be prepared with rain gear.

Rain moved into West Virginia, Virginia, and western North Carolina early on Tuesday morning. Along with the rain, heavier downpours and some gustier winds were reported


"The main area of severe weather on Tuesday will be confined to east of the mountains," said AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Eric Leister.

This is the same storm system that produced several tornadoes and left a trail of damage in its wake across the south on Monday night.

The exact timing of thunderstorms could impact those waiting in line to cast their midterm election vote, and could even deter voters for a time.

Download the free AccuWeather App to receive alerts about adverse weather heading your way. Within the app, or at AccuWeather.com, you can also check MinuteCast® to see when rain and storms will be impacting your area.

A line of thunderstorms moved from west to east throughout the day Tuesday.

The stronger storms and wind wound down in places like Hagerstown, Maryland; Roanoke, Virginia; Washington D.C.; and Baltimore. Light rain could still persist in these areas through the afternoon.

Stronger storms will likely wait until mid- or late afternoon for places like Raleigh, North Carolina; Norfolk, Virginia; Dover, Delaware; and New York City. Weather will likely be more favorable during the morning for those going out to vote in these areas, although some early rain could have voters reaching for the umbrellas.

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In addition to downpours and dangerous lightning, as the storms approach and move through the region, an uptick in winds is also likely.

Some wind gusts could surpass 50 mph, strong enough to cause localized damage and sporadic power outages, especially with how soggy the region has been in recent weeks. Trees may topple more easily due to the saturated ground.

Gusty winds in combination with any heavier rain and thunderstorms could quickly drop leaves from trees. Downed leaves could lead to clogged storm drains, ultimately causing urban flooding issues, as well as slick road conditions.

Ponding of water on roadways could lead to the risk of hydroplaning and will slow travel on roadways at times. Flight delays are possible at times due to the severe weather risks.

Following the severe thunderstorms through Tuesday evening, dry weather will set in for most of the region, before more storminess returns late in the week.

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