A storm chaser captured the moment a tornado hit Beauregard in Alabama killing at least 23 and injuring more than 90 people. (March 5)
A massive storm will bring a mix of wild weather to the central and southern U.S. this weekend, including blizzard conditions in the Midwest and the chance for tornadoes in the Southeast.
The snowstorm will likely be at its strongest later Saturday and into Sunday, AccuWeather meteorologist Alex Sosnowski said. The heaviest snow is expected in the Dakotas and Minnesota. “Strengthening winds will greatly lower the visibility and cause extensive blowing and drifting snow,” he said.
Wind gusts of up to 45 mph are likely, weather.com meteorologist Linda Lam said, which could result in reduced visibility, drifting snow and blizzard conditions in some locations in the northern Plains.
Roads will quickly become slick and snow-covered once the snow starts falling, AccuWeather said.
At least another foot of snow is forecast to paste winter-weary Minneapolis, which has already seen over 5 feet of snow this season. “This will be a heavy, wet snow and add extra stress to buildings, which could lead to roof collapses,” the National Weather Service said.
The weather service in North Dakota issued a “cold advisory for newborn livestock” because of the severity of the forecast.
Winds from the storm will howl around the Great Lakes states on Sunday; gusts of 60 to 70 mph are possible in Chicago, Detroit and Buffalo, New York.
Meanwhile, another outbreak of severe weather and tornadoes is taking aim on the Deep South on Saturday. The areas at highest risk include Arkansas, most of Mississippi and central and northern Alabama, the Storm Prediction Center said. In Alabama, the state’s two biggest cities – Birmingham and Montgomery – are in the area of greatest risk for severe storms.
In Tennessee, both Memphis and Nashville could also see severe weather.
“The full spectrum of severe weather is anticipated, ranging from damaging wind gusts, large hail and frequent lightning strikes to flash flooding and tornadoes,” according to AccuWeather meteorologist Kayla St. Germain.
“The greatest period of concern is from early Saturday afternoon into Saturday night,” St. Germain said.
Last weekend, at least 39 tornadoes hit the Southeast, the weather service said. The worst was the EF4 twister that roared through Lee County, Alabama, with 170 mph winds, killing 23 people and injuring 90.
And looking ahead to next week, yet another big storm will again deliver a mix of snowy and stormy weather across the central U.S.
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