(CNN) — More than 50 million people are at risk of extreme weather Thursday in the United States, from the central part of the Gulf of Mexico coast to the Ohio River Valley. There are chances of long duration tornadoes, especially in the south.
“A possible outbreak of strong storms, including several strong long-duration tornadoes, large hail and destructive winds will occur Thursday through Thursday night in part of the lower Mississippi Valley and southeastern states,” said the Center for Storm Prediction (SPC).
Long-duration tornadoes are those that stay on the ground for a long period of time. Most tornadoes are on the ground for only a few minutes, but for some serious events there could be tornadoes on the ground for hours. This type of tornado is known to cause widespread damage.
The latest forecast shows a level 4 “moderate risk” for major storms in northern Mississippi, southwestern Tennessee and northwestern Alabama. This level 4 out of 5 risk category means that “widespread strong storms are likely,” according to the SPC. Large hail, damaging winds, and tornadoes are possible in this setting.
The “moderate risk” area includes large cities such as Memphis and Nashville in Tennessee, Jackson in Mississippi, and Birmingham and Huntsville in Alabama.
“On Thursday the ingredients will be combined for another outbreak of extreme weather in the south,” said CNN meteorologist Chad Myers. “The very humid air in the Gulf of Mexico combined with a strong upward motion is going to create several rounds of extreme weather, including whirling storms that could generate tornadoes,” he explained.
Last week’s tornadoes
Last week, the states of Mississippi and Alabama, among others, took the brunt of the intense storms. The National Meteorological Service offices confirmed that on Wednesday and Thursday there were 49 tornadoes that crossed about 340 km in the south of the country.
Last week the ingredients were in and tornadoes developed, but not as strong as meteorologists believed possible. None of the tornadoes were stronger than an EF-2 on a scale of 0 to 5.
Although the correct atomic ingredients were present, they were not mixed accurately enough to generate the predicted violent tornadoes.
“It’s like you put too many carrots in chicken soup – you end up having sweet carrot soup and not chicken soup,” Myers explained.
Thursday could be terrible and possibly another “high risk” day if you put together the right mix of ingredients.
“Given the very favorable environmental forecast in this region and the potential for numerous supercells, an upgrade to High Risk may be required for multiple strong to potentially violent long duration tornadoes in a later outlook upgrade,” said SPC.
Wednesday night, first possibility of tornadoes
Another active weather pattern that is establishing itself in the country is introducing storm systems that will cause more storms.
A new storm system located over the southwestern United States will move across the Plains Wednesday night. This is going to be the main driver of this new extreme weather event.
For Wednesday night SPC forecasts the possibility of extreme weather from central Texas to Mississippi. The greatest risk will be in central and northeast Texas. This part of the state is in the category 3 out of 5 extreme weather “increased risk”.
During the day, scattered thunderstorms could occur in parts of central Texas, with more widespread rain near the Texas Mango.
On Wednesday night the activity will intensify with the formation of a line of storms, which will bring with it the risk of strong winds and hail, but also the possibility of tornadoes further east.
With these storms will come an avalanche of heavy rains that could cause flooding in some parts of the south.
At this time there are flash flood warnings in places near the central part of the Gulf Coast, including New Orleans, Baton Rouge and Gulfport, Mississippi.
The threat of strong storms will be greater on Thursday
Wednesday’s storms will move eastward and focus on the Deep South on Thursday, as the major storm risk zone is likely to widen and become more significant. Strong storms are possible from the Gulf Coast to Ohio.
“Any form of extreme weather is possible, including tornadoes, some of which could be strong (and) long in duration, large hail larger than a golf ball (and) destructive winds from (more de) 110 km / h) ‘, said the office of NWS in Jackson, Mississippi.
There may be a couple of stronger storms in the risk zone on Thursday morning, but the most active weather will begin in the afternoon, when several supercell storms could form.
“At this time, the greatest potential for strong tornadoes appears to be spreading from parts of central / northern Mississippi into western / central Tennessee and central / northern Alabama, primarily Thursday afternoon and evening, as the storms they usually move northeast, ”the SPC said Wednesday afternoon.
The forecast shows that atmospheric conditions “will support supercells with low-level mesocyclones capable of producing strong tornadoes and large hail,” said SPC.
Overnight on Thursday the storms are expected to develop into a line as it moves into parts of Alabama and Georgia.
By Friday, most of the south should be dry, except for parts of Georgia and the Carolinas, where light rains and isolated thunderstorms could persist.
George is Digismak’s reported cum editor with 13 years of experience in Journalism