UPDATE: Tornado Watch, Flash Flood Watch in Effect, ‘Torrential Rainfall’ Possible
After getting pelted with a couple of inches of rain this morning, more is on the way this afternoon and this evening, and Kane County is under both a Tornado Watch and a Flash Flood Watch, according to the National Weather Service. The Tornado Watch is in effect until 11 a.m. Monday, July 13; the Flash Flood Watch is in effect until 1 p.m. Tuesday, July 14.
“A very moist air mass is in place with dew points in the middle 70s to around 80, which will allow any thunderstorms that develop to produce torrential rainfall in a very short amount of time,” the NWS says.
According the NWS Hazardous Weather Outlook, thunderstorms may produce:
- Exteme wind gusts to 80 mph.
- Hail to at least golf-ball size.
- Tornadoes, including “a strong tornado or two.”
- Torrential downpours and flash flooding.
With widespread severe weather predicted for most of Illinois later today (Monday, July 13, 2015), the Kane County Office of Emergency Management and the Illinois Emergency Management Agency is encouraging people to stay aware of local forecasts and be prepared to act quickly if storm warnings are issued. Much of the state is also expecting heat indexes above 100 until early this evening, and IEMA officials urged people to stay safe in the extreme heat.
“While we’ve already seen severe storms in northern Illinois this morning, another storm system expected late afternoon into the evening hours could bring localized flooding from heavy rains, severe thunderstorms with damaging wind gusts and large hail, and even a chance for tornadoes,” said IEMA Director James K. Joseph. “In addition, high temperatures and humidity will cause dangerous heat today, so we encourage people to stay hydrated and cool as much as possible today.”
Joseph said people should have multiple ways to receive notifications and updated information about severe weather warnings, such as through a weather alert radio, Wireless Emergency Alerts, weather alert apps, TV and radio broadcasts, the Internet, outdoor warning sirens and more.
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration weather alert radios can be programmed to issue a tone alarm and provide information about a warning that has been issued for your county.
Wireless Emergency Alerts are available on most smartphones. Check your phone’s notification settings under “Government Alerts” to ensure “Emergency Alerts” is turned on. With a WEA-enabled phone, you will receive tornado and flash flood warnings issued for your location, even if you’re traveling outside your home county or state. Other smartphone alerting apps also are available, including a tornado app by the American Red Cross and a weather alerting app from the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
In addition, many communities have outdoor warning sirens, which can alert people outdoors of an approaching hazard. Don’t rely on these sirens to alert you when you’re inside a building or asleep.
For more information about severe weather preparedness and heat safety, visit www.Ready.Illinois.gov.
SOURCES: National Weather Service, Ready.Illinois.gov