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Severe Weather Moving Through Charlotte Area Friday Afternoon, Evening

Updated 4: 10 p.m.

Nearly the entire state of North Carolina, as well as parts of South Carolina and Virginia, are under a tornado watch this afternoon as a severe storm rakes up the east coast. The National Weather Service says the Charlotte Metro-Area is facing a high risk of damaging wind gusts, and has about a ten percent chance of seeing a twister. 

Meanwhile, the Weather Service has also issued a surge of storm warnings for areas along the North and South Carolina border, extending up into the mountains and east into coastal plains. The storm has already swept through several Southern states, knocking out power and in some cases overturning vehicles.

Meanwhile, the South Carolina Highway Patrol is urging drivers to avoid Interstate 26 in Orangeburg County, where large tree limbs are littering the roadway, forcing lane closures. The interstate is the main artery from South Carolina’s Upstate through Columbia all the way to Charleston.

Here in the Charlotte region, the Weather Service says the greatest threats will likely by around 5 o’clock this evening.

Updated 3:46 p.m.

The National Weather Service has issued a tornado warning for Catawba County until 4:15 p.m. Friday.

Severe thunderstorm warnings have also been issued for parts of the mountains, including Hendersonville and East Flat Rock, and flash flood warnings are in effect for areas near Franklin, Bryson City, Brevard, and Cedar Mountain.  

The storm has already been blamed for the death of a 8-year-old girl in Florida when a tree blew into a home earlier today. The storm has also left more than 100,000 people without power across Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, and Texas.