severe thursday

The National Weather Service is predicting severe storms Thursday afternoon. All of Central Alabama is in the yellow, level two out of five, risk area.

As cleanup from last week’s storms continue, another day of stormy weather could be possible Thursday.

According to the National Weather Service (NWS), a dynamic system is expected to move through the Mississippi/Alabama region early Thursday morning. This system could bring gusty winds outside of thunderstorm activity, including sustained winds up to 25 mph.

Apart from strong winds, a tornado or two could be possible, along with periods of heavy rain.

Rain amounts up to one inch are expected as the system moves through the area.

The NWS’s Storm Prediction Center has outlined a level two out of five “slight” risk for all of Central Alabama. In the “slight” risk area, wind gusts up to 60 mph and a tornado or two are possible with thunderstorms Thursday afternoon.

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The NWS emphasized that 60 mph straight-line winds can be just as dangerous as some smaller tornadoes, and that the best course of action is to not be outside during a severe thunderstorm.

The main timeframe for severe storms comes Thursday around 2 p.m. and could last until around d 7 p.m.

Colder air will return to Alabama behind the storms. Friday could see temperatures hovering just shy of 50 degrees and a few snow flurries could be possible early Friday morning for the northern third of the state.

Another round of storms could be possible Monday and Tuesday of next week, but forecasters say it is too early to know at this time.

As for all severe weather days, the NWS urges everyone to prepare ahead of time for the possible storms. This includes having a severe weather plan — which means knowing what to do in case your area is placed under a severe thunderstorm warning or a tornado warning — and making sure everyone in your family knows the plan. The most important step in the plan is having more than one reliable way of receiving warnings. The two most reliable ways are having a properly programmed NOAA weather radio in your home or business and having Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA) enabled on your cellphone. When WEA is enabled on your cellphone, your phone will sound a loud alarm and vibrate strongly when your location is placed under a tornado warning.

Kaitlin Fleming is the managing editor of Tallapoosa Publishers, Inc. To reach Kaitlin, email