First Alert: Wind Advisory in place as storms move out

CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - The WBTV First Alert Weather Center is updating the weather system that moved through Carolinas. Check for updates on and in the WBTV Weather App (iPhone Android).

Thursday 6 a.m.

A final push of showers and storms is moving through our Southeastern counties early on this morning. These will continue to move out of the viewing area through the next hour or so. The Severe Thunderstorm Watch has been allowed to expire early, as it appears the severe threat has ended for the morning. These last few showers could still contain some downpours and rumbles of thunder, as well as gusty wind, but should remain below severe limits.

The front is moving through the western Carolinas as we speak. Once it passes, the wind on the back-side of the storm system is going to pick up drastically for today and tomorrow. A High Wind Warning is in effect for the mountains with gusts of 60 mph possible. Wind gusts to 40 mph will be possible for all other areas, where a Wind Advisory is in effect. Both will be valid from 8 a.m. Thursday morning to 8 p.m. Friday evening.

The final component of this system will be the mountain snow showers. A Winter Weather Advisory has been issued for North Carolina mountains up through Avery counties. Elevations above 3500 feet could see up to 3" of snow.

Thursday 5 a.m.

We are seeing a weakening trend in the showers and storms although they came into the viewing area at pretty high speed around midnight. Now, they are weakening over the I-77 corridor with just scattered showers left, and some storms up towards Greensboro.

A Severe Thunderstorm Warning is in effect for Union County, with hail possible in Albemarle through 5:30 a.m.

A Severe Thunderstorm Watch remains in effect until 7 a.m. - however, it appears the severe threat is rapidly diminishing. A Wind Advisory will be in place from 8 a.m. Thursday to 8 p.m. Friday for the counties of Mecklenburg, Iredell, Rowan, Catawba, Gaston, Lincoln, Cleveland, Burke and Cabarrus.

By later on, there may be a few showers left around into this morning. After that, we will dry out and cool down. Highs will only reach the low 60s. Plus it will be quite breezy - especially in the mountains.

We remain cool on Friday before we warm back up over the weekend. After tonight, the 7-day forecast looks clear and dry.

Stay safe!

- Meteorologist Lyndsay Tapases

Thursday 2:25 a.m.

A line of thunderstorms ripped across the region overnight producing strong winds and several reports of nickel to quarter size hail. But overall it's fair to say we dodged a bullet with no reports of tornadoes.

Attached is the latest radar imagery showing the last of the stronger storms exiting our northern counties around Iredell and heading into Davie County toward Greensboro.

It's not out of the question a few more localized showers and storms could redevelop around Charlotte and in the upstate of South Carolina toward daybreak but the threat from any severe weather and damage should remain minimal at this point.

- Eric Thomas

Wednesday 10:45 p.m.

We are continuing to watch the thunderstorms move in from the west. As we move throughout the night, they will push into the area. However, we have hope that they might not be quite as bad as originally expected.

The good news is that the storms are moving into an area of rain-cooled air left behind by the storms that moved through upstate South Carolina and North Carolina earlier in the day. That should help to tamp down some of the storm potential as they will be moving into more stable air. That being said, we can't completely rule out the possibility of some strong-to-severe storms making their way into the region overnight.

Even an isolated tornado is still a small possibility. It is wise to have a way to get weather warnings while you're asleep. The WBTV Weather App will sound an alarm if there is a warning overnight. Just make sure your settings allow for you to hear a warning if and when one is posted.

The Storm Prediction Center has lowered us to a "Slight Risk" for the whole WBTV viewing area as you can see in the graphic. Earlier in the day, most of us had an "Enhanced Risk" in North Carolina and a "Moderate Risk" in South Carolina. That means we still have the chance of strong to severe storms, but it doesn't look quite as dangerous as it did just a few hours ago.

Be safe and stay weather aware tonight!

- Leigh Brock

Wednesday 3:50 p.m.

We have had rain since midday and will continue to get heavy rain at times for several more hours. We may have a few rumbles of thunder but it appears that our biggest threat will come in overnight.

We can expect rain – possibly heavy at times off and on through the evening. The biggest concern will come in late tonight – unfortunately when many people are sleeping. The cold front will move through late and bring the last round of storms.

The line of storms will run into a really unstable atmosphere. Because of that, we have our best chance for strong to severe thunderstorms.

Even an isolated tornado can't be ruled out. For that reason, it is imperative that you have a way to get weather information overnight. The WBTV Weather App will wake you up as long as you have your sound settings set to alarm when there is a warning. It's worth checking that before you go to bed.

Timing of when the storms arrive has been and will continue to be difficult this evening. Several of the models have had a "dry bias" today. That means the models, which we use to forecast, have been underestimating the amount of rain that has fallen. That means we can't depend on them for timing and rain fall totals as we typically would.

The good news is that we have radar and that can tell us all we need to know. So not to worry!  The timing may not be exact but we can still tell you everything you need to know, when you need to know it. Typically, at this point in the game, we rely more on radar anyway.

Be safe and we'll keep you posted

- Leigh Brock

Wednesday 12 p.m.

Some rain is moving in a little ahead of schedule this afternoon, but this is non-severe. However, if you're headed out for a lunch break you will need the umbrella. There are some storms too, but again the severe weather threat is still coming a little later on, so that timing has not changed.

Currently, a Tornado Watch over Georgia is set to expire at 1 p.m. There are discussions right now from the SPC about other parts of the Southeast up through South Carolina being considered for a Tornado Watch, so there will likely be more to come during the afternoon/evening hours.

As of right now, there isn't any part of North Carolina being considered for a Tornado Watch, but it is still early.

Aside from this midday batch of rain, everything else still looks on track for late afternoon/early evening for the first wave of potential severe weather, followed by the second, more intense wave overnight.

- Lyndsay Tapases

Wednesday 7:30 a.m.

We're waking up to a mostly clear morning, but don't let that fool you. A First Alert Day is in effect for today, with two distinct waves of rain and storms set to arrive.

Here's what you need to know. The morning hours are just fine. Even through lunch, it's largely dry and uneventful. Although clouds will increase during this timeframe, the rain/storm threat overall is quite low through early afternoon.

By late afternoon we'll track our first wave of rain and storms. There could be some embedded strong storms during this time, and isolated severe as well. The timing of this first wave could impact the evening commute for many folks.

Then, it looks like there may be a break that develops later on this evening, before the second round arrives late tonight. Unfortunately, this second wave looks like it carries with it a higher severe and tornado threat.

We never like to see tornado potential arrive during overnight hours, because many folks are asleep or unplugged and much less aware than they are during the day. So, please be sure you have a way to get your severe weather alerts and information tonight in the event of a warning for your area while you're asleep.

Also worth noting- on Monday night, a man was killed in the Union county SC tornado while he was sleeping in his mobile home. Mobile homes are one of the worst places to be during a tornado.

If you live in a mobile home, it would be a great idea tonight to see if you can spend the night with a friend or family member who lives in a more sturdy structure, especially across South Carolina where the risk for tornadoes is higher. Once a tornado warning is issued, it is usually too late to seek better shelter. You will be much safer taking precautions ahead of time.

- Lyndsay Tapases

Wednesday 5:45 a.m.

A First Alert Day is in effect for today, with the most active weather expected to begin this afternoon, lasting through late tonight. So, the morning commute should be just fine-- we may even see a little sun!

For the remainder of the day, the Storm Prediction Center has the majority of our parts of the Carolinas under a Slight risk for severe weather, with an Enhanced threat across our SC counties (meaning numerous severe storms are possible). This has improved from this time yesterday, as most of us have dropped down a level on the SPC scale.

However, scattered to numerous severe storms are still nothing to fool around with, and the impacts expected are still largely the same.

From our standpoint, little has changed in that we still expect widespread shower and thunderstorm activity to arrive this afternoon with an increased threat of severe weather during the evening hours and deep into the overnight.  Large hail is possible, but the primary threat will once again be damaging high winds with a slightly elevated risk of tornadoes.

By Thursday morning, it will be moving out. Behind it will be much cooler air. In fact, there could be snow showers for the highest elevations with possible accumulating snow.

Friday will also be cool, with highs in the upper 50s. The weekend looks like a winner. Highs will be in the 60s on Saturday and 70s on Sunday. Both days look sunny and dry.

- Lyndsay Tapases

Tuesday 11 p.m.

In this latest Severe Weather Blog, the Storm Prediction Center has increased the threat level across the Carolinas to Enhanced and Moderate for Wednesday and Wednesday night.

While 'Moderate' may not sound like much, it's actually the second highest threat level issued by the SPC.

From our standpoint, little has changed in that we still expect widespread shower and thunderstorm activity to arrive Wednesday afternoon with an increased threat of severe weather during the evening hours and deep into the overnight.

Large hail is possible, but the primary threat will once again be damaging high winds with a slightly elevated risk of tornadoes.

Stay in touch with the weather with the WBTV weather app by searching for WBTV at your app store for the latest alerts.

- Eric Thomas

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