DC area braces for destructive evening storms, hail and tornadoes

by Chloe Baker
Airport Protests

The Washington DC area is preparing for a night of severe storms, with the possibility of hail and tornadoes.

On Monday, with the anticipation of intense storms including tornadoes, hail, and lightning, thousands of federal employees in the Washington area were dismissed early. The Office of Personnel Management declared that all non-emergency staff must leave before 3 p.m., as all federal offices were scheduled to close at that time. This unusual action was taken in light of a forecast indicating that the storm could be exceptionally damaging.

A tornado watch, lasting until 9 p.m., has been issued by the National Weather Service for the greater D.C. area, along with a flood warning that extends until Tuesday morning. A special statement from the Weather Service highlighted a significant risk of local hurricane-force winds that could be damaging or even destructive, in addition to the potential for large hail and strong tornadoes.

President Joe Biden’s departure for a four-day trip to Arizona, New Mexico, and Utah was moved up by 90 minutes by the White House, which also called off a cybersecurity event related to back-to-school, featuring first lady Jill Biden, Education Secretary Miguel Cardona, Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, and other educational professionals from across the nation.

Tornado watches were also spread over 10 states ranging from Tennessee to New York, with the National Weather Service pointing out the Washington-Baltimore region as the area of utmost concern.

The National Weather Service’s meteorologist, Chris Strong, during a Facebook live briefing, stated that this appears to be one of the most significant severe weather occurrences in the Mid-Atlantic region in recent memory.

Forecasters were particularly worried about the storms’ timing, which were expected to hit populated regions during the late afternoon and early evening. This led to the early dismissal of federal workers to prevent them from being on the roads during the potentially dangerous weather conditions.

Strong urged people to take shelter, advising them to either stay home or remain at work.

The report included contributions from Collins in Columbia, South Carolina, and Big Big News writer Darlene Superville in Washington.

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Kevin R. August 7, 2023 - 11:33 pm

Got family in DC, hope theyre okay. Keeping an eye on the news, fingers crossed.

Mike J. August 8, 2023 - 5:03 am

Can’t believe the storms are coming our way again, stay safe everyone.

Tom432 August 8, 2023 - 6:11 am

Anyone else freaked out by this weather I’m seeing people getting ready, boarding windows and all!

Sara_H August 8, 2023 - 8:09 pm

Wow, this is scary. just got the notice to leave work early, never seen anything like this before

JennyB August 8, 2023 - 9:24 pm

what’s going on with the climate lately? seems like one disaster after another…take care ppl!


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