The severe weather season has begun across the United States including eastern North Carolina. We saw severe weather move into our area last Friday and there is another slight risk later tonight. Another storm system could bring the potential for severe weather again on Saturday. March, April and May can be quite active for severe thunderstorms across the Southeast. The greatest tornado outbreaks in our area occurred on March 28, 1984 and April 16, 2011, less than one year ago. Several fatalities were caused by these tornadoes. The transition from winter to spring is when we see the most tornadoes across the Southeast. Predicting severe weather well in advance is not an exact science. There are several weather variables that need to come together to produce a widespread outbreak. Typically, we see isolated or scattered strong cells as a cold front presses into warm and humid air. These storms can move at 50 to 60 mph in the early spring and that is why conditions can change rapidly. We continue to see heavy thunderstorms by June and July but the risk for tornadoes tends to decrease.
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