Tornado Watch Issued for Portions of WHAG Viewing Area Through Monday Night

HAGERSTOWN, MD (WHAG) - The Storm Prediction Center in Norman, Oklahoma has issued a Tornado Watch for the following counties in the WHAG Viewing Area through 10:00 PM Monday Night:

In Maryland:  Frederick & Washington
In Pennsylvania: Adams
In West Virginia: Berkeley, Jefferson and Morgan
In Virginia: Clarke, Frederick, Loudoun, Page, Shenandoah and Warren

Some sunshine is breaking through the clouds this afternoon, and with the right dynamics coming together with a weather disturbance moving through the region tonight, severe thunderstorms are possible with the threat for tornadoes through the late evening hours tonight.

Remember, if a Tornado Warning is issued for your area, take immediate precautions.  Move to the lowest floor of your home, such as a basement, if no basement is available, then move to the interior most portion of your home such as a bathroom, and put as many walls between you and the outside as possible.

Also: The National Weather Service Baltimore/Washington, D.C. is continuing a Flash Flood/Flood Watch for the following counties in the WHAG Viewing Area as well through late Monday Night:

In Pennsylvania: Adams, Franklin & Fulton
In Maryland: Frederick
In Virginia: Loudoun, Page, Shenandoah & Warren 

Remember, do not drive through waters of unknown depth, as it only takes around a foot of water to sweep cars away. Turn Around, Don't Drown!

Stay alert for rapidly changing weather conditions this afternoon, and be prepared to take appropriate precautions should warnings be issued today.

With the Four State Region have tornadoes just about every year, or every other year, whether they are weak or strong, and in light of the recent tornadoes in the Midwest, finding shelter during a tornado is the best thing to protect your life.  Meteorologist Brad Panovich's (Chief Meteorologist at WCNC-TV - NBC Charlotte, North Carolina) Blog posts about the scales of a tornado shelter, and how to move the odds of surviving any tornado up in your favor:

#1 Underground bunker, pre-built shelter, custom safe room or large bank vault. These will withstand even a monster EF-5 storm

#2 Basement, crawl space or other lowering inside a sturdy structure. The normally are safe in all instance but even here debris can collapse on you causing injury.

#3 Interior room with no windows with 2-3 walls between you and the outside in a strong framed structure. In almost all cases you will survive here with minimal injuries. Wearing a helmet will add in survivability.

#4 Interior room or bathroom on the lowest level in single story home or lighter constructed building. The building will likely sustain heavy damage but with a helmet or getting in a bathtub survivability is likely.

#5 Interior room on lowest level of a weak framed or strong manufactured home. Not a perfect situation but this may be the only choice and while injury is likely with head protection and anchoring survivability is possible. Especially in EF-0 to EF-2 storms.

#6 Strong, modern and heavy vehicle with seat belts and airbags trying to drive away from the path of the tornado. This is somewhat controversial but research has shown survivability is likely with modern crash cages and the safety features of modern vehicles. Convertibles or small cars are a no, no. This is not ideal but if you have time and in rural settings driving away can be an option. Especially if you are somewhere lower on this list. (source)

#7 Mobile home or weak manufactured home. These are mobile for a reason if a car or truck can tow your home than a 60-7mph wind can move it easily. The overwhelming majority of tornado deaths occur in manufactured homes. Get to a sturdy structure if at all possible but as a last resort interior room may save your life in weaker storms.

#8 In a ditch or low-lying area. This was something preached for years by safety officials and as a last resort can help. But water, lighting, wind and debris can still get you in these spots. Try to improve your situation if at all possible.

#9 Tents, temporary structures or picnic pavilions. In situations like camping, concerts or festivals get somewhere else fast. These structures provide little to no safety at all and often times the stakes and ropes become deadly missiles in even light winds.

#10 Out in the open, walking, running biking with nothing but you and the wind and debris. The worst possible situation to be in. You are betting off laying down or getting in a ditch. Which is far better than this situation. I hope you never find yourself in this situation.

Nevertheless, tornadoes and severe weather are nothing to play with, and if severe weather threatens your area, take the appropriate precautions to protect yourself and your family.

Stay with the WHAG Weather Team on Facebook and Twitter for the latest details during any severe weather event...

Meteorologist Bryan Tolle:  Facebook / Twitter
Meteorologist Alan Auglis:  Facebook / Twitter
Meteorologist Dan Peck:  FacebookTwitter
WHAG Weather Alert Network:  Facebook / Twitter

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