Thursday, 11 April 2013

Southern Mississippi under threat for tornadoes through early Thursday afternoon

Southern Mississippi under threat for tornadoes through early Thursday afternoon, The threat for tornadoes is expected to continue through early Thursday afternoon for southern Mississippi.

The Storm Prediction Center (SPC) issued a new tornado watch from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Thursday for 25 counties including Jackson, Harrison, Hancock, George, Stone, Pearl River, Greene, Perry, Forrest, Lamar, Marion, Walthall, Pike, Amite, Wayne, Jones, Covington, Jefferson Davis, Lawrence, Lincoln, Clarke, Jasper, Smith, Simpson and Copiah.

This watch covers the cities of Hattiesburg, Biloxi, McComb, Brookhaven, Pascagoula, Gulfport and Laurel.

Thunderstorms are expected to strengthen as they encounter an increasingly unstable airmass out ahead of an approaching but slow-moving cold front through the morning.

This coupled with moderately strong shear will result in favorable atmospheric conditions to support severe storms capable of producing damaging winds and tornadoes.

The probability of two or more tornadoes within the watch area is at 40 percent, according to the SPC.

This is the third tornado watch issued for parts of the state since Wednesday evening.

Fortunately, there have not been any reports of tornadoes so far here but a reported tornado caused significant damage and injuries in Arkansas as a result of this same storm system.

In addition to the threat for tornadoes, heavy rainfall and flooding is possible with a flash flood watch in effect for much of the state through Thursday afternoon. Some areas could receive up to four inches of rainfall with an unusually moist airmass in place across the region.

The threat for severe weather and heavy rainfall is expected to come to an end as the cold front exits the state by early Thursday evening.

Everyone is strongly urged to stay updated on the latest weather information as it becomes available.

The state is in the midst of its most active period for severe storms and tornadoes from March through early May. The month of April is historically the most active for tornadoes.

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