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Veterans Day Severe Weather Outbreak to Threaten 30 Million in Central US

By By Alex Sosnowski, AccuWeather senior meteorologist
November 12, 2015, 8:04:23 PM EST

A severe weather outbreak has taken aim at areas from Shreveport, Louisiana, to Des Moines, Iowa, and Chicago on Wednesday, Veterans Day.

The ongoing severe thunderstorm threat zone covers an area home to approximately 30 million people over the Central states and will continue to move eastward into Wednesday night.

Wind Could Hinder Travel Plans


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The main threat from the thunderstorms will be the damaging wind gusts. Gusts in the strongest storms can approach 70 mph, which is strong enough to cause property damage, knock over trees, cut power lines and send loose objects airborne.

Several storms on Wednesday have already produced wind gusts in excess of 65 mph across Iowa and northern Missouri.


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According to AccuWeather Meteorologist Jordan Root: “The threat of tornadoes is diminishing into the overnight hours, but an isolated tornado or two can’t be ruled out.”

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While the event will not bring a major severe weather outbreak, a single tornado striking a populated area can lead to great destruction and loss of life.

Along with powerful winds, Chicago will see a line of showers and thunderstorms pass through into the early morning hours, according to Root.

Hail and a brief burst of rain can also occur with some of the storms. Travel delays are likely throughout the region. Flights will be held up until thunderstorms pass regional and major airports. Sudden low visibility can be a major hazard for motorists traveling at highway speeds.

People are encouraged to keep up to date on the weather situation and be alert for rapidly changing conditions on their travels. Be sure to review severe weather safety tips with their family.

The risk of severe thunderstorms will be significantly lower on Thursday as the storm system and trailing cool front reach the East.

Adverse weather, accompanying the strengthening storm, will not just be confined to the Mississippi Valley on Veterans Day.

Other effects from the large storm include windswept snow over the Rockies and central High Plains and powerful wind gusts in absence of thunderstorms from the Plains to the Great Lakes.

Content contributed by AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Kristina Pydynowski.

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