The Associated Press
JACKSON – Mississippi communities still digging out from last week's violent weather kept vigil Thursday as another round of storms brought increasing wind gusts and the potential for more damage.
The National Weather Service said hail and severe thunderstorms are possible late Thursday and early Friday in the northwestern third of the state.
The storms are expected to generally focus on areas from Vicksburg into northwest Mississippi. While the weather service said lingering, heavy rain is not expected to be part of the system, any rainfall would create more problems for farmers and residents in the Yazoo River Basin, where backwater already is covering thousands of acres near overflowing streams.
From Vicksburg on the swollen Mississippi River over to Meridian on the Alabama line, thousands of people are repairing damage and cleaning away downed trees from last Friday, when five tornadoes pounded central Mississippi. Officials estimate some 8,000 homes were damaged, most in the Jackson area.
Steve Wilkinson with the National Weather Service in Jackson said the new storm system could bring hail and damaging winds to the northwestern third of the state. He said one or two particularly strong tornadoes are possible.
He said another round of storms is expected to move into the southeastern two-thirds of Mississippi on Friday but the threat of violent weather should not be as severe as the first round.
Wilkinson wind gusts of 25 to 35 miles per hour are expected over a broad area. He said people in areas hit by last week's storms should watch for weakened trees and limbs.