Severe weather expected to enter region today

news_severe_greenBy Errol Castens

Daily Journal Oxford Bureau

TUPELO – Northeast Mississippi and the rest of the Mid-South are under a wind advisory from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. today ahead of a cold front that should move through the region this afternoon or evening.

While strong southerly winds are expected throughout the day, the damaging winds will be along a squall line that accompanies the cold front. Sustained winds of 25 miles per hour are expected, with gusts as high as 45 miles per hour.

“The primary threat with this system will be damaging winds,” said Zack Maye, a National Weather Service forecaster in Memphis. “It’ll be coming through Tupelo in the early evening hours – about 7 to 8 p.m., likely.”

Severe thunderstorms also are possible along and ahead of the cold front. Forecasters have identified an area stretching from near the Gulf Coast to the Ohio Valley where the chance of severe weather for any given location is around 30 percent.

“We don’t have so much instability that … everybody will see severe weather,” said NWS forecaster Benjamin Schott.

Tornadoes are only a slight possibility with this storm system, Maye said.

“Anytime you’re talking about severe thunderstorms, tornadoes are possible,” he said. “That’s a small chance this time. It’s not going to be any great tornado outbreak.”

errol.castens@journalinc.com