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Posted at 11:15 PM ET, 10/26/2010

Tornado watch until 3 a.m. for metro region

By Jason Samenow

* PM Update: Windy, overnight showers & storms | Weather Wall *
* Regional radar showing showers/storms to west *

(updated at 11:15 p.m., originally posted at 8 a.m.)

The metro region is included in a large tornado watch spanning parts of six states. The watch extends from the Mason Dixon line southwest all the way into western South Carolina and extreme northeast Georgia. From NOAA's Storm Prediction Center:


The National Weather Service Forecast Office in Sterling also issued a Special Weather Statement about the severe storm threat. Here's the key excerpt:


Based on the current storm movement (southwest to northeast) and models forecasts, storms will probably begin affecting the far southwest and western suburbs as early as between 12 p.m. and 3 a.m., the immediate metro region between 2 and 6 a.m. (toward the end of the watch period) and far eastern suburbs (not included in the watch) between 3 and 7 a.m.

The cold front associated with this historic storm has already produced more than 250 wind damage reports and spawned 21 tornadoes today alone. While severe storm reports are unlikely to be as widespread overnight, the potential exists for wind damage and isolated tornadoes.

By Jason Samenow  | October 26, 2010; 11:15 PM ET
Categories:  Alerts, Thunderstorms  
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Next: Forecast: Gusty showers & storms a threat today


It will be a dark & stormy night.....

Posted by: FIREDRAGON47 | October 26, 2010 8:23 PM | Report abuse

Good thing I'm off tomorrow. I'm gonna stay up late tonight and batten down the hatches!

Posted by: natsncats | October 26, 2010 8:29 PM | Report abuse

By the pricking of my thumbs...and the fact that my head is going to explode...We are in for something unusual for this time of year.

Posted by: SPS1 | October 26, 2010 8:33 PM | Report abuse

This is shaping up as potentially the most intense system to move through here since July 25. Doug Hill mentioned (and Mosaic confirms) our action will come from the SW. There now are two lines of activity in western NC-eastern TN and southwest VA and the Tennessee batch is developing a real kick. (I'm not talking about Tennessee squeezins'... unless the Smokies catch hold of the Tennessee stuff and squeezes it out.)

Posted by: JerryFloyd1 | October 26, 2010 8:35 PM | Report abuse

"This is shaping up as potentially the most intense system to move through here since July 25."

Wonderful news. Just what I want to hear. July 25 kicked off three days without electricity...

I'm making extra ice right now, and placing the coolers in the kitchen.

Posted by: Murre | October 26, 2010 8:41 PM | Report abuse

Haven't seen weather this intense in quite some time. There's something eerie about going to bed during a tornado watch. Hopefully things will peter out as the evening wears on...

Posted by: bodyiq | October 26, 2010 8:58 PM | Report abuse

@bodyiq: I'm a little creeped out by trying to sleep with a tornado watch posted, too. I may get in the bed, but I doubt I'll sleep...

Posted by: --sg | October 26, 2010 9:21 PM | Report abuse

H-mmm so it is certain we are having a stormy night?
Night time tornado watch makes me feel a little nervous.

Posted by: 2belinda | October 26, 2010 9:38 PM | Report abuse

For those of you worried about sleeping while tornadoes threaten, why not turn on the radio to WTOP low enough to fall asleep but loud enough to wake up if the bzzz, bzzz of the emergency alert sounds for a weather emergency? I've done that in the past and will do so tonight as I don't own one of those weather radios with the alarms to wake you up.

Posted by: HokieAnnie | October 26, 2010 9:41 PM | Report abuse

Can't lie...I'm also pretty nervous about going to sleep with these kinds of conditions headed our way.

Posted by: HokieTerp | October 26, 2010 9:43 PM | Report abuse school tomorrow?

Posted by: samd95 | October 26, 2010 9:52 PM | Report abuse

A full moon can keep me tossing and turning. But impending storms? Keep a flashlight at hand, hope for the best, and snooze away. However, if this were snow... ;))

Posted by: JerryFloyd1 | October 26, 2010 9:53 PM | Report abuse

I'm also nervous. And I lived in the outer reaches of Tornado Alley in the 1970s (Des Moines, IA). But you expect them at a certain time -- late spring, early summer in the late afternoon. Not in October, and rarely at night.

I do remember a tornado warning that happened a bit out of season, at night, in March 1979. I remember it so well because that was the night that the news about the accident at Three Mile Island broke.

Posted by: kperl | October 26, 2010 9:54 PM | Report abuse

I hadn't thought of how eerie it is to go to sleep with a tornado watch.

Posted by: Murre | October 26, 2010 10:01 PM | Report abuse

Okay so I was pretty successfully pushing the night-time-tornado-watch stress out of my mind, but now you guys have me nervous, too. I thought I was the only one. I remember a few years ago I asked about which weather radio CWG recommended and they graciously provided a link to a nice one for just this kind of occasion. Of course I procrastinated and never bought it, so now I am wishing I did. Kind of like the snow shovel we didn't need until last year...Maybe CWG would recommend one again?

Posted by: manassasmissy | October 26, 2010 10:13 PM | Report abuse

It's better to be a little nervous than to poo-poo the possibility.
It makes you pay attention and prepare for the worst but hope for the best. I have experienced hurricanes and once a tornado that went through Lancaster Pa. No fun, and no joke.
Be smart and stay alert.

Posted by: 2belinda | October 26, 2010 10:22 PM | Report abuse

I am pretty sure my weather radio is totally busted. I have a walkman radio, maybe I'll sleep with it close, next to the flashlight. I'm hoping for the best but preparing for the worst.

Good night all, let's hope nothing bad happens overnight.

Posted by: Murre | October 26, 2010 10:31 PM | Report abuse

Guys, I'm not the most relaxed person in the world, but I fell asleep during hurricane Donna in Wilmington, NC, even though a window came crashing out in the house we lived in. It's wise to prepare, yes, but I wouldn't get spooked by this impending storm. Especially since it's still a ways SW of here and apt to lose some punch in the wee hours. Let Halloween be fright night.

Posted by: JerryFloyd1 | October 26, 2010 10:33 PM | Report abuse

Here is the over reaction of the month. Montgomery County canceled all outdoor sports activities at 8pm due to what they called a "tornado warning". At the time the nearest weather was at least 150 miles away if not further.

You guys should volunteer to educate these dopes about the difference between a watch and a warning and show them how to access a weather radar screen and how to read it.

Posted by: MKadyman | October 26, 2010 10:46 PM | Report abuse

It's kind of an eerie night out there, spitting rain, leaves blowing around, moon darting in and out of the clouds...

Posted by: Brian-CapitalWeatherGang | October 26, 2010 11:38 PM | Report abuse

Storms starting to fire up in W/SW Va. Tornado warning south of Roanoke.

Posted by: Jason-CapitalWeatherGang | October 26, 2010 11:51 PM | Report abuse

Weather radios can be also be a pain. Once the action starts, mine goes off constantly, for everything from thunderstorm alerts to flooding on the Potomac to weather affecting the Eastern Shore.

Posted by: weathergrrl | October 26, 2010 11:52 PM | Report abuse

Test post, I been having trouble posting 4 several days.

Posted by: VaTechBob | October 26, 2010 11:57 PM | Report abuse

@VaTechBob: loud and clear

Posted by: weathergrrl | October 27, 2010 12:00 AM | Report abuse

sometime my posts appear as a double post & sometimes they never shows up. Not sure what the problem is .

Posted by: VaTechBob | October 27, 2010 12:04 AM | Report abuse

I did not think I would make an appearance for another few weeks as the winter weather begins to rear its head. Flight out of Dulles at 6:20am headed to Atlanta. Should I expect major weather delays. Should I request a few drinks out of the gate due to turbulance?


Posted by: RainManGreg | October 27, 2010 12:08 AM | Report abuse


Whatever you do, don't hit submit more than once after you've entered a post and don't try reloading the page. That will generate multiple posts. Just wait for the process to complete or try again later. Wish I could help more with your problem but I haven't heard of others experiencing it and don't know what's causing it. (I've been deleting your multiples)

Posted by: Jason-CapitalWeatherGang | October 27, 2010 12:10 AM | Report abuse

@RainManGreg -- when in doubt, I say pre-medicate...

Posted by: natsncats | October 27, 2010 12:20 AM | Report abuse

@MKadyman: agreed. TV shows miss this all the time, too, confusing tornado watch with tornado warning. One show had people going into the interior hallways when a watch was called.

Posted by: kperl | October 27, 2010 12:23 AM | Report abuse

My arm started with a new type of aching tonight, (recently acquired screws and plates to radius/ulna) so propped it up, ice (although still cast). Started reading CNN mobile and learned about the storm. Anyone with experience with weather, bones, metal in body? Have broken a few other bones...never had this before. Is this due to pressure changes, humidity, metal? Thanks!

Posted by: motherrunner | October 27, 2010 12:23 AM | Report abuse

I guess the winds will whisk away what little fall color we've had. Bummer.

Flashlight on the nightstand, ready to snooze, wishing I was in Fargo where there's light snow w/ more on the way (and the barometer is reading is still only 28.69, while Duluth is doing 28.51).

Posted by: JerryFloyd1 | October 27, 2010 12:27 AM | Report abuse

@motherrunner - When I acquired large quantities of metal in my ankle three years ago, it would ache like mad whenever the weather was undergoing a radical change. It will get better. (I'm still sporting the metal, and not a twinge out of it tonight.)

Posted by: meta2 | October 27, 2010 1:58 AM | Report abuse

@meta2-Thank you! Good to hear its not always permanent. Was surprised on how little information I could find on this.

Posted by: motherrunner | October 27, 2010 2:10 AM | Report abuse

@motherunner - Motrin, etc., works well for pain management. Keep lots on hand for when it gets very cold outside; that's when things hurt worst. Toddling back to bed now after checking on the status of the tornado watch...sleep well, everyone.

Posted by: meta2 | October 27, 2010 2:16 AM | Report abuse

Looks like whatever "strong" storms we are going to get are starting to line up in the Western burbs for arrival over the next few hours. Good news it looks like all will be clear for the morning rush (except maybe the extreme Eastern Shore Commuters).

Posted by: JJones-CapitalWeatherGang | October 27, 2010 2:19 AM | Report abuse

Ha! I didn't prepare very hard, nor worry about it. My radio is downstairs in the kitchen I'm up now for reasons unrelated to the weather. So far (famous last words!) things don't look that bad out there. I'm going back to sleep shortly. On the other hand, there's a tornado warning north of South Hill, Virginia right now. Here's hoping that's the only warning tonight.

Posted by: Murre | October 27, 2010 3:22 AM | Report abuse

Just got up to get ready to catch my 5:30am bus. (Joy.) The ground is wet outside, so it must have rained, but it looks like we're all in one piece. I certainly hope no rough stuff hits while I'm waiting for the bus.

Posted by: --sg | October 27, 2010 4:03 AM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

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