As a storm responsible for violent thunderstorms and tornadoes in the Central states moves along, the potential for severe weather will reach the mid-Atlantic and Southeast at midweek, threatening lives and property.
During Tuesday, severe weather will put more than 60 million people from southeastern Michigan to the central Gulf coast eastward to the Carolinas and southern Virginia at risk.
During Wednesday, the severe weather potential affecting 30 million people will continue from Ohio to the Carolinas and northern Florida but will expand northeastward into Pennsylvania, northern Virginia, Maryland and Delaware.
Major cities in the path of the storms from Tuesday to late Wednesday include Detroit, Cincinnati, Pittsburgh, Charleston, W.Va., Roanoke, Va., Charlotte, N.C., Atlanta, Columbia, S.C., Knoxville, Tenn., Birmingham, Ala., New Orleans, Jackson, Miss., Tallahassee, Fla., Raleigh, Richmond, Washington, D.C., Baltimore and Philadelphia.
An additional round of storms may affect the Atlantic Seaboard on Thursday from Boston, Hartford, Conn., and New York City to Wilmington, N.C., Savannah, Ga., and Jacksonville, Fla.
Along with the possibility of storms with damaging wind gusts, frequent lightning strikes and hail is the chance of a few tornadoes. People will need to keep an eye on the weather and stay up-to-date with advisories, watches and warnings. If you believe that a tornado is approaching your location, seek shelter indoors in an interior room or basement.
Motorists cruising along on area highways will want to keep an eye out for rapidly changing weather conditions. The storms will cross major highways such as interstates 20, 40, 64, 65, 70, 75, 77, 80, 81, 85 and 95.
This is the type of situation, where much of the day may be cool and clammy, yet conditions can change rapidly to allow the formation of severe thunderstorms, including a tornado.
In addition to the threat for violent storms, there will be a broad area of torrential rain that will fall over several hours and during a couple of days. Not only can this rainfall cause travel delays and cancellations of outdoor activities, but it can also cause flash, urban and small stream flooding. Some locations from the central and southern Appalachians to the Atlantic coast and Great Lakes may receive 3 to 6 inches of rain over a couple of days.
Some of the rain will occur in the zone expected to be hit by severe thunderstorms. However, significant rain will fall north and east of the severe weather threat area over potions of upstate New York, the northern mid-Atlantic and New England.
Generally cloudy and cool conditions will linger in the wake as the large storm system responsible continues to crawl eastward.
By the time, the storm exits the United States, rounds of severe weather produced from it are expected to stretch seven days, from this past Saturday evening in parts of Texas and the southern Plains until Friday in parts of the East.
According to Severe Weather Expert Henry Margusity, "Not only will this outbreak be the worst of the season so far, due to a sluggish start in severe weather, but it may end up being one of the worst outbreaks of severe weather for the entire season."
The storms since this past weekend have claimed the lives at least 17 people.
More than 230 incidents of severe weather have been reported since Saturday evening, and the number of incidents is likely to more than double until it move out to sea this weekend.