Tornadoes a threat before dawn Tuesday

Posted April 4, 2011
Updated April 5, 2011

— A swath of counties across North Carolina's mid-section were under tornado watches early Tuesday on the leading edge of a front moving through the state before dawn. A watch means conditions are right for tornadoes to form, but none have been spotted or radar or with the naked eye.

The front brings with it the possibility of isolated tornadoes and damaging winds, according to WRAL chief meteorologist Greg Fishel. The weather system left trees downed and wind and lightning damage throughout the southeast, but had weakened slightly as it moved toward the Carolinas, Fishel said. 

"We probably won't see anything arrive here until after 5 a.m. (Tuesday)," said WRAL meteorologist Mike Maze. "When the threat gets here, it will be more in the way of damaging wind gusts than tornadoes."

Rain is just about a guarantee Tuesday morning, and some parts of central North Carolina could see as much as an inch of rainfall before the front is past. 

The chance for intense thunderstorms in central North Carolina will diminish by lunchtime Tuesday, leaving the rest of the day cloudy and breezy with a high of 64 degrees.

Monday was humid, windy and full of sunshine. Winds will not die down after the sun goes down. 

The wind is expected to “roar all night” long, Fishel said.

Temperatures will continue to increase as the week goes on, with a high of 68 Wednesday, 75 Thursday, 80 Friday and 84 Saturday and Sunday.

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  • connie2006 Apr 4, 2011

    Bye bye pollen!!!!

  • Bring on the 4 Dollar Gas Apr 4, 2011

    Good luck to everyone in keeping your shutters, cans, furniture and other belongings tonight or tomorrow morning. There won't be much to survive I'm sure and I bet it rains about 1/4". Drought buster not, but belongings destroyer, you betcha.

  • Big Mike Apr 4, 2011

    How many of you have died from passing storms...??? If it's your time's your time so get a grip and let the forecasters give you a heads up. Nothing you can do about it so stop worrying. I'm more worried about finishing my 2010 taxes on time than this storm thing...

  • Ric The Red Neck Smithfield NC Apr 4, 2011

    DrierThanAuntGertrude is thta deier than aunt gert rude? i for one think the weathe crew doews a gret job.....................

  • Bring on the 4 Dollar Gas Apr 4, 2011

    Time to pull the worry and fear mongering cards out. We could be blown to bits overnight. As if today isn't bad enough. Have you seen where your trash currently are? Not good to the west. It's time for you people to get serious in the weather center and scare the public into another frenzy.

  • wdweveryyear Apr 4, 2011

    ima and drier seem to be related to waiting lol

  • lma1973 Apr 4, 2011

    Nah-i just stayed in a Holiday Inn Express last night!! ;)

    "You have PhDs in both history and meteorology don't you?"
    GOLO member since July 26, 2007
    April 4, 2011 2:05 p.m.

  • NCSUPackfan Apr 4, 2011

    "Why do you think the Wright Brothers came to NC? Because its freakin windy here and its the best place to get a glider off the ground. NC: "First in Flight" because its windy!!" -lma1973

    You have PhDs in both history and meteorology don't you?

  • lma1973 Apr 4, 2011

    It depends on the definition of "windy". Who cares if its windy in North Dakota-there is nothing to blow down there. In NC there are tons of trees and homes damaged by the wind every year. Raleigh is known as the City of Oaks so when its windy here it makes an impact and its windy here ALL the time.

  • Bring on the 4 Dollar Gas Apr 4, 2011

    most funny and clueless statement of the year so far.

    "It hasn't been windy at all lately"

    hahahahahahahahahahha, right.