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Severe Weather Update: Strong storms likely with tonight's cold front

The severe weather threat for Thursday is now at a level three out of five
Credit: Chandlor Jordan

TYLER, Texas — Here's the latest from the CBS19 Weather Center. 

Along and north of I-20, today's severe threat now stands at a level 3 out of 5. This is also known as an "Enhanced Risk" of severe weather. This risk means there could be numerous severe thunderstorms. 

For Deep East Texas, there's a level 2 out of 5 risk. This is also known as a "Slight Risk" of severe weather. This risk means scattered severe thunderstorms are possible.

Credit: Chandlor Jordan

One of the threats associated with today's storms is large hail. There's even a significant "hatched" threat, where dangerously large hail is possible. This means hailstones within the hatched area could be as big as hen-eggs or even larger. The main area for this threat is the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex.

Credit: Chandlor Jordan

Strong upper-level winds coupled with lower-level jet stream winds will create something called wind shear over East Texas. 

Wind shear is the change in wind direction or wind speed from the surface to higher altitudes in the atmosphere. 

If there's shear, then thunderstorms can rotate. If thunderstorms are rotating, they can form strong updrafts. If there are strong updrafts and thunderstorms are rotating, then tornadoes can form. Today offers a slight threat for tornadoes across East Texas. 

The biggest threat for tornadoes will come with any thunderstorm that can become discrete or separated from other thunderstorms. These thunderstorms can quickly become tornado producers. Each round of severe weather today has a tornado threat.

Credit: Chandlor Jordan

The last threat, and main threat from today's severe weather event will be damaging wind gusts. The best chance at a damaging wind gust aligns with our level 3 of 5 risk for severe weather. This means there's an "Enhanced" chance of wind gusts of 60 - 70 MPH.

Credit: Chandlor Jordan

As we have mentioned, two rounds of severe weather are possible today. The first round will occur from 1 - 5 PM. This isn't the best chance all day, but one or two of these storms that fire up could turn severe. All threats of severe weather would be possible with these.

The second round, and best chance at severe weather will be along the cold front as it drops into East Texas. This will occur from 7 PM - 2 AM. This will also features all types of severe weather, with damaging wind gusts being the main threat. After 2 AM, our severe weather will end, giving us much calmer weather as head into the weekend.

Credit: Chandlor Jordan

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