August 6, 2010

Southeast Friday Forecast

Severe storms will target the steamy Southeast from the Carolinas to Mississippi this afternoon into tonight, threatening lives and property and slowing travel.

A nearly stationary front draped across the region will ignite the thunderstorms while the intense heat and humidity that has been plaguing the Deep South provides fuel.

The two biggest concerns with the storms will be widespread torrential downpours that can lead to dangerous flash flooding and high wind gusts that can lead to damage.

Low-lying, poor drainage, and urban areas have the greatest threat of flash flooding. Motorists are urged to avoid driving on roads with water over them, because doing so puts your life at risk.

Gusts over 60 mph will topple trees and power lines, wreaking havoc in some communities, perhaps during the afternoon rush hour.

Trees may come crashing down on some homes and vehicles, causing destruction and putting lives at risk.

The winds will even be strong enough in some areas to overturn semi trucks and campers.

Widespread power outages are a possibility across some counties of the Southeast.

It is not out of the question for isolated tornadoes and waterspouts to be spawned by the strongest storms that erupt.

Any thunderstorms that develop, whether they turn severe or not, will produce dangerous lightning strikes.

Flights will likely be delayed by blinding downpours during the afternoon in cities like Raleigh, Charlotte, Columbia, Atlanta, Birmingham and Jackson.

Downed trees, flash flooding, and low visibility in heavy rain can cause significant slow downs on roadways in the same cities.

Without the heating of the sun, many of the storms will die down by late in the evening. However, the stormy weather may continue to threaten the eastern Carolinas.

Charleston and Myrtle Beach are at risk.

One positive aspect of the storms is that they will provide brief cooling. On Thursday, the temperature plummeted over 20 degrees in 40 minutes as drenching storms moved through Nashville.

By Meghan Evans, Meteorologist -

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