CLEVELAND, Ohio -- It was a busy night for the National Weather Service in Cleveland, constantly sending out updated severe thunderstorm watches, warnings, coordinating storm reports from county emergency managers, and even issuing a tornado warning.
That's right, at one point the thunderstorms reached such a strong level, rotation was seen on the Doppler Radar. At 5:55 a.m., a tornado warning was issued for Portage and Summit counties. Soon enough, Cuyahoga and Geauga counties were added to the warning, but thankfully, no tornado has been confirmed to touch down yet. However, Illinois, Missouri, Tennessee, Indiana and Iowa were not as lucky, as 22 tornadoes ripped through those states killing three.Radar image during the time of the tornado warning affecting Cuyahoga County.National Weather Service
What Northeast Ohio did endure, was plenty of severe thunderstorms with winds topping 58 mph causing widespread wind damage. Since 1 a.m., 19 thunderstorm wind damage reports have officially been received by the National Weather Service, ranging from downed trees and power lines to a blown roof blocking the exit onto W 25th from I-71. Over 14,000 FirstEnergy customers are currently without power.Local storm reports since 1 a.m., as of 8 a.m.National Weather Service Local storm reports since 1 a.m., as of 8 a.m.National Weather Service Local storm reports since 1 a.m., as of 8 a.m.National Weather Service
The severe weather stemmed from atmospheric instability brought about by a strong, large-scale low pressure system with a warm front ahead and trailing cold front behind.
Between the low and the warm front is something called the "warm sector" and is characterized by very warm, moist, unstable air. This region was relatively broad, and was the focus of the severe weather outbreak.
Will the severe weather continue the rest of the day?
The thunderstorms are expected to continue on-and-off throughout the day into dawn Thursday. A sliver of Northeast Ohio is under a marginal, slight, and enhanced risk for severe weather through 7 a.m. Thursday, so make sure to continue to stay weather aware, even if the worst of it may be over.Today's severe weather outlook.NOAA Storm Prediction Center
While we are no longer under a severe thunderstorm watch, the low pressure system initiating all these storms is still causing very strong winds, so as a result the National Weather Service implemented a wind advisory, warning of wind gusts over 45 mph at times through 4 a.m. Thursday.
Keep checking cleveland.com/weather for daily weather updates for Northeast Ohio, and don't forget to submit any weather questions you may have.
Kelly Reardon is cleveland.com's meteorologist. Please follow me on Facebook and Twitter @kreardon0818.
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