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Severe weather moving through the region this evening

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

This story has been updated.

Severe weather is expected to move into the region Friday afternoon and evening.

National Weather Service meteorologists say confidence "is increasing for severe thunderstorms" across the region with multiple storms likely. There is a "possibility that a few strong tornadoes may occur" as a line of storms sweeps across southern Missouri, southern Illinois and western Kentucky.

A social media post from the National Weather Service earlier today compared the weather conditions to instances in 2017 and 2013, both of which generated multiple tornadoes.

Storm damage caused by a system moving through far western Kentucky earlier this week left many without power. National Weather Service meteorologist Sean Poulos said during a briefing Friday morning area residents will have to be on the lookout again during this period of moderate storm risk.

“The environment is definitely primed for a significant event,” he said. “I know this is our second event in a week here mid-December, here two weeks before Christmas, so a little bit unusual on back to back events like this. It’s like we’re in spring or something.”

This line of storms is expected to move through southeast Missouri, southwest Illinois and far western Kentucky between 4 and 8 p.m. CST. The storm will reach Calloway County and Marshall County between 6 and 10 p.m. CST as it moves east.

This line of storms will likely stem from a cold front moving east across southwest Missouri through WKMS’s coverage area.

These storms will be moving rapidly eastward, around 50 to 60 mph. There is a medium risk of tornadoes and high speed winds and a low likelihood of flooding or hail.

Temperatures Friday across the region are expected to reach near-record highs for December, Poulos added.

The area’s National Weather Service office may host a Facebook live session with updated forecast information this afternoon. Updated forecasts will be available throughout the day onthe NWS website.

A native of western Kentucky, Operle earned his bachelor's degree in integrated strategic communications from the University of Kentucky in 2014. Operle spent five years working for Paxton Media/The Paducah Sun as a reporter and editor. In addition to his work in the news industry, Operle is a passionate movie lover and concertgoer.
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