Wake, Durham, Cumberland schools releasing early Wednesday

Posted February 23
Updated February 24

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— With a powerful storm system bearing down on central and eastern North Carolina, several school systems announced early dismissals Wednesday.

Wake, Cumberland, Durham and Johnston counties will all close early, and most counties have also canceled after-school activities.

See a full list of early school dismissals.

The storm system caused at least seven tornadoes to touch down in Louisiana and Mississippi, resulting in three storm-related deaths. That system will travel into the Triangle late Wednesday morning, which will put the region under a level four severe storm risk – level five is the highest risk. WRAL Chief Meteorologist Greg Fishel said he would not be surprised if that risk was increased before Wednesday morning.

“One thing that’s not all that great today is the instability; a lot of other severe weather parameters are coming together to suggest that we would have damaging winds,” WRAL meteorologist Mike Maze said. “It would be easy to see winds gusting up toward 75 mph with some thunderstorms."


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  • Janet Ghumri Feb 24, 2016
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    Be prepared, this is North Carolina, and we always get our share (or more) of severe weather. It's part of the dues we pay for living in such a great state. *Sigh*

  • Brandon White Feb 24, 2016
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    Yashi, we know the difference between a watch and a warning.

  • Scott Householder Feb 23, 2016
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    Also for additional completeness:
    This forecast indicates that SPRINGTIME is getting CLOSER!!! YAYYY!! ;-)

  • Fanny Chmelar Feb 23, 2016
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    Just for completeness:

    A watch does not mean that the severe weather is actually occurring, only that atmospheric conditions have created a significant risk for it. If severe weather actually does occur, a tornado warning or severe thunderstorm warning would then be issued.