36 NC counties are under alert, including Wake, Cumberland, Durham, Johnston, and Orange counties. Details
Published: 2020-05-05 04:17:00
Updated: 2020-05-05 18:26:05
By Mike Maze, WRAL meteorologist
Raleigh, N.C. — A severe thunderstorm watch is in effect for 43 North Carolina counties through 11 p.m. The watch means weather conditions are right for a storm to form.
In the Triangle, there is the possibility of some rain and storms late Tuesday evening, WRAL meteorologist Mike Maze says. There is a level 1 risk for severe weather in parts of the Triangle and a level 2 risk in some areas southwest of the Triangle, including Sanford, Goldsboro, Fayetteville and Lumberton.
"We have a warm front moving into the southern part of the state this evening bring some warmer and more humid air. Along with the front there is upper level energy that will ride through the region. The concern is that due to the front in the vicinity that some severe storms could have damaging wind gusts and a tornado or two," Maze said.
The air was becoming more moist and instability growing by 7 p.m.
The best chance for severe weather, including the potential for hail, heavy rain and strong winds, will be Tuesday evening after 8 p.m., Maze said.
Forecast models show weak updrafts on a line from Fayetteville to New Bern. Those could lend to the development of a tornado, Maze said.
Tornadoes are not likely. The greater threat is for large hail, up to the size of baseballs, and damaging winds.
The Triangle is included in the severe weather risk, but conditions will be worse to the south.
Tuesday was markedly cooler than recent days have been, with temperatures only getting into the 60s in Raleigh. The normal high for May 5 is around 77 degrees.
Wednesday and Thursday will cool and cloudy, with highs around 67 degrees in Raleigh.
Friday will be cloudy but warm, with a high around 72 degrees.
The weekend looks sunny and milder, with highs in the mid 60s. Mother's Day will be beautiful but cool, with a high in the low to mid 60s.