Fox News Weather Center

LIVE: Severe storm outbreak prompts school dismissals in Louisiana

A significant severe weather outbreak is underway across the southeastern United States, threatening the region into Tuesday night.

"There is the potential for not only a severe weather outbreak, but also a significant number of tornadoes from Louisiana to western Georgia and the Florida Panhandle on Tuesday," AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Henry Margusity said.

Millions of people from Louisiana to Georgia will be at risk of facing the outbreak, including people in Tallahassee, Florida; Mobile and Montgomery, Alabama; Jackson, Mississippi; and New Orleans.

The most intense storms may produce destructive tornadoes that stay on the ground for several miles. Other slightly weaker storms may still lead to property damage with winds stronger than 60 mph.

UPDATES: (All times are listed in Central Standard Time)

12:16 p.m. CST Tuesday: A tornado crossed I-10 near Prairieville, Louisiana, NWS spotter reports.

11:50 a.m. CST Tuesday: A possible waterspout was spotted over Lake Pontchartrain.

11:42 a.m. CST Tuesday: Strong winds caused roof damage to a structure in White Castle, Louisiana, law enforcement reports.

11:37 a.m. CST Tuesday: Baton Rouge, Louisiana, Mayor Kip Holden is sending city employees home ahead of severe weather.

11:10 a.m. CST Tuesday: A funnel cloud was observed at New Orleans International Airport.

8:48 a.m. CST Tuesday: Public schools in St. Tammany Parish, Washington Parish, Tangipahoa Parish, Livingston Parish, St. Helena Parish, Louisiana, are closed today in advance of severe weather. Numerous other schools will conduct early dismissals.

Louisiana State University and Southern University will close at noon.