Tornado watch, severe thunderstorm warning for Dutchess


    The greatest possibility of thunderstorms will be between 1 and 9 p.m., according to the National Weather Service in Albany.

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    Storms may be severe in the mid-Hudson region this afternoon, and more than 1,700 have been left without power.

    A tornado warning for much of northern Dutchess and northeastern Ulster counties has been canceled, but the National Weather Service in Albany warned the area remains under a tornado watch until 7 p.m. and severe thunderstorm warning until 4:45 p.m.

    As of 3:50 p.m., Central Hudson Gas & Electric Corp. reported 1,733 of its 120,686 customers in Dutchess County were without power. More than 600 of those were in Washington and more than 400 were in Milan. 

    This morning, Ingrid Amberger, meteorologist with the National Weather Service said wind gusts greater than 58 mph are possible, which may damage trees and power lines.

    « There is potential for large hailstones, in a diameter of an inch or greater, » Amberger said. « Also heavy downpours. We can’t rule out the possibility of a few tornadoes also forming today. »

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    The storm comes roughly three weeks after Tropical Storm Isaias caused 72,000 Dutchess County homes to lose power, some for nearly a week.

    The impending weather is expected between 1 to 9 p.m., she said. Storm development is anticipated near 3 p.m. 

    There is also an expected mix of heat and humidity. The high is forecasted to reach 86 degrees and a low of 67 tonight. Amberger said the heat index values could make temperatures feel like 90 degrees.

    « What is unique about the front is temperatures are going to be in the mid 80s with high humidity, » Amberger said. « If you go up to the Lake George, Saratoga region, they are going to be in the lower 60s. There’s a big difference north and south of the front. »

    Ryan Hawthorne, assistant vice president of electric engineering and operations at Central Hudson , said in release that customers should be aware of possible outages today. 

    « We will continue to closely monitor the weather conditions and prepare for any potential outages that could result from storm damages by readying equipment and personnel, and maintaining contact with regional utilities and local emergency responders, » Hawthorne said.

    « An additional round of storms is expected to impact the state on Saturday, » NYSEG said. « The strong winds and rain have the potential to bring down trees and limbs, causing damage to overhead power lines and other electrical equipment. The companies urge customers to monitor local forecasts and prepare for the possibility of service interruptions. »


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