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Severe thunderstorms containing tornadoes and Kansas-like supercells are possible today, the National Weather Service (NWS) cautions.
The NWS Storm Prediction Center in Oklahoma has upgraded the western half of the Lower Hudson Valley, including Newburgh, to an “enhanced” risk of severe thunderstorms today. The agency, which tracks severe thunderstorm outbreaks across the country, puts the region in the highest risk in the nation for today.
Two rounds of thunderstorms will sweep across the Hudson Valley this afternoon.
The first round will occur ahead of an approaching cold front and will be in the form of discrete thunderstorm cells between 1pm and 3pm. Although meteorologists admit they are not totally confident about storms developing during this first round, any storms that do develop would produce large hail or an isolated tornado. The best chances are north of New York City, including the Newburgh area.
The second round will contain a more organized line of storms, likely reaching the region between 5pm and 6pm. As temperatures reach 80 degrees, daytime heating will be in place when a strong cold front arrives, triggering the convection.
Any severe thunderstorms that occur today produce wind damage. Peak gusts of 55-70 mph will be a common threat. Low-level wind shear may become strong enough to support a few tornadoes with pre-frontal supercells. The strongest storms may produce isolated large hail up to 1.5″ in diameter.
At 10am, storms were already beginning over western Pennsylvania, prompting severe thunderstorm watches and warnings.