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NWS says a tornado touched down in Virginia
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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — The National Weather Service says that it has confirmed a tornado in Virginia.
Michael will bring several threats to North Carolina. Heavy downpours in a short amount of time could lead to flash flooding. The greatest risk for flooding will come across the Piedmont where three to seven inches of rain is forecast. Lower amounts are now expected in the mountains and near the coast. Areas of southeastern North Carolina including Wilmington that saw at least two feet of rain during Hurricane Florence should only see around one to two inches of rain from Michael.
Michael Brings flash flood and tornado threat to NC
The National Weather Service in Wakefield tweeted Thursday that radar confirmed the tornado shortly after 5:30 p.m.
Strong wind gusts will also be a concern across the state Thursday. Gusts will range from 25 to 50mph with the highest gusts expected in the afternoon from near the Triangle and Sandhills to the coast. The winds combined with a saturated ground could lead to downed trees and spotty power outages.
It touched down near Scott’s Fork, which is in southern Amelia County and about 36 miles (58 kilometers) southwest of Richmond.
Hurricane Michael came inland Wednesday afternoon along the Florida panhandle just below category 5 strength causing catastrophic damage. It has since weakened into a tropical storm but will still pack a punch as it quickly moves across the Carolinas Thursday.
533pm Radar CONFIRMED Tornado near Scotts Fork in southern Amelia County. A Tornado is on the ground, TAKE SHELTER NOW #vawx pic.twitter.com/SAIUDSK609
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Brief tornadoes could spin up as well near and to the east of Michaels track. That would place the threat for tornadoes mainly in an area from around the Triangle and Sandhills to the coast.
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“As Tropical Storm Michael turns to the Commonwealth, I want to urge all Virginians to prepare for the serious possibility of flash floods, tropical storm force winds, tornadoes, and power outages,” Northam said in a written release. “I am declaring a state of emergency in order to provide state assets to Virginians and to assist our neighbors in states who are dealing with the devastating effects of this historic storm. My thoughts are with all those along with the Gulf Coast and my administration will continue our outreach to governors and state agencies where Hurricane Michael has produced widespread damage.”
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At least two deaths have been blamed on Michael as it blasted Florida and Georgia. Though weakened into a tropical storm, it continued to bring heavy rain and blustery winds to the Southeast as it pushed inland, soaking areas still recovering from last month's Hurricane Florence.
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