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Parts of Alabama could see rough overnight weather

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Parts of the state are being advised to prepare for bad weather tonight. An approaching cold front is expected to pass over Mississippi before heading into west Central Alabama this evening. Forecasters say that could carry a slight chance of tornadoes and heavy straight-line winds. The National Weather Service says heavy winds can pose a safety hazard like a tornado. Daniel Martin is a meteorologist with the agency. He says tonight is a good opportunity for everyone to practice having two ways to get weather alerts…

“We always recommend a weather radio,” he said. “Whenever you receive a warning over that radio, it’s very loud and it will certainly wake you up, if you’re in one of those warnings. So, weather radio first and then a back-up way to receive that warning.”

Martin says one back-up weather alert is your cell phone. Warnings could result from tornadoes or straight-line winds. Martin adds that heavy winds might seem less dangerous than a full blown tornado, but either could pose a safety hazard that people need to look out for…

“Yes, straight-line winds can cause damage, and they need to be taken seriously," said Martin. "So, I would still stay inside a well-built structure, if you’re in one of those severe thunderstorm warnings. So, it’s important to take them as seriously as tornado warnings.

Along with winds and tornadoes, the forecast also calls for the possibility of hail which could also pose the threat of damage. The rough weather forecast is expected to persist until Wednesday morning.

Pat Duggins is news director for Alabama Public Radio.
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