Storm center predicts nasty weather

The NOAA Storms Prediction Center (SPC) continues to place all of Connecticut into the Slight Risk for Severe Thunderstorms later today and tonight. The National Weather Service (NWS) has issued a High Wind Warning for Northern Litchfield County and a Wind Advisory for the rest of the state from this afternoon until 6 a.m. Wednesday. Temperatures currently range from the upper 60s in Northern CT to the low 70’s along the coast. Winds are currently from the South at 10 – 20 MPH gusting to 30 – 35 MPH at times along the coast. CL&P and UI are currently reporting 589 customers without power in Western Connecticut.

During the next few hours a strong but slow moving cold front will continue to move from West to East across Western / Central NY and PA. This area should remain to the east of the more significant rainfall along this front and skies may in fact brighten at times early this afternoon as warmer and more humid air moves into the state. Temperatures are forecast to reach the mid 70s across most of the state as southerly winds continue to increase this afternoon with winds sustained at 20 – 30 MPH, gusting to 50 MPH at times by 5 p.m.

For this afternoon, scattered pop-up thunderstorms may develop across the area in the warmer and much more humid air ahead of the front. Any thunderstorms that develop are likely to have some rotation and the SPC is forecasting a 10% chance of tornadoes with any storms that develop in Southwestern CT and a 5% chance across the rest of the state. The SPC is also forecasting a 30% chance for strong winds (especially in Western and Central CT) and a 5% risk of hail. The severity of the pop-up thunderstorms will depend in part on how much warming occurs prior to the formation of the storms. If temperatures reach 75 F then severe storms will be more likely. Other threats will also include strong gusty winds, and torrential downpours that may result in brief urban flooding especially if storms move over the same areas repeatedly.

As the cold front moves through the area overnight tonight a band of heavy rain with embedded thunderstorms and possibly a few weak tornadoes is still forecast to move slowly from West to East across the state between 8 p.m. this evening and daybreak on Wednesday, weather officials said. Towns can expect strong southerly winds gusting to 40 – 60 MPH which may cause power outages especially along the coast and in the higher elevations. Heavy rainfall of 1 – 3 inches can also be expected to cause urban flooding in poorly drained areas. The front is forecast to move to our east by daybreak with clearing skies Wednesday morning.

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