ORANGE COUNTY WARNS RESIDENTS OF POSSIBLE SEVERE WEATHER

ORANGE COUNTY, NC (February 23, 2016)–The forecast from the National Weather Service-Raleigh calls for severe thunderstorms and a high certainty for pockets of damaging straight-line winds (70 mph) on Wednesday, February 24.

In addition to severe thunderstorms carrying straight-line winds, the risk is also fairly high for one or more tornadoes to generate across the Piedmont. As such, severe thunderstorm warnings should not be ignored, and should be treated like tornado warnings.

It is important to know the difference between a Watch and a Warning issued by the National Weather Service:

Tornado Watch: Be Prepared!
Tornadoes are possible in and near the watch area. Review and discuss your emergency plans and check supplies and your safe room. Be ready to act quickly if a warning is issued or you suspect a tornado is approaching. Acting early helps to save lives! The watch area is typically large, covering numerous counties or even states. 

Tornado Warning: Take Action!
A tornado has been sighted or indicated by weather radar. There is imminent danger to life and property. Move to an interior room on the lowest floor of a sturdy building. Avoid windows. If in a mobile home, a vehicle, or outdoors, move to the closest substantial shelter and stay protected from flying debris. Warnings typically encompass a much smaller area, typically the size of a city or small county.

Severe Thunderstorm Watch: Be Prepared!
Severe thunderstorms are possible in and near the watch area. Stay informed and be ready to act if a severe thunderstorm warning is issued. The watch area is typically large, covering numerous counties or even states. 

Severe Thunderstorm Warning: Take Action!
Severe weather has been reported by spotters or indicated by radar. Warnings indicate imminent danger to life and property. Take shelter in a substantial building. Get out of mobile homes that can blow over in high winds. Warnings typically encompass a much smaller area, typically the size of a city or county.

Orange County residents are reminded safety tips, preparedness information and registration for the OC Alerts emergency notification system can be found at www.readyorange.org

Meantime, Orange County Emergency Services will continue to monitor current weather conditions and forecasts.

The latest weather updates can be obtained from the Emergency Services Twitter page at www.Twitter.com/ocncemergency

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