Dangerous line of thunderstorms to blitz across southern US as weekend wears on

Alex Sosnowski

The same storm system that spawned deadly tornadoes in the Mississippi River Valley will continue to push eastward across the South into Saturday night.

A line of violent thunderstorms and tornados brought down trees, toppled trucks, created power outages, and damaged buildings across parts of Texas, Louisiana and Mississippi into Friday night.

Tornadoes spread into Alabama through the day on Saturday.

Click here for the latest storm reports on the ongoing severe weather outbreak.

Crews from Bossier Parish Police Jury and Haughton Police Department on the scene assessing storm damage in Bossier Parish, Louisiana. (Bossier Parish Sheriff's Office).

Into Saturday night, an AccuWeather Local StormMax™ wind gusts of 80 mph are predicted as storms shift east across the Tennessee Valley and the Southeast. Brief spin-up tornadoes could touch down along the squall line through the evening hours.

The strongest storms will continue to cause damage, toppling trees, triggering power outages and causing property damage. Even outside of the most volatile storms, blinding downpours could create dangerous travel conditions for motorists.

The threat of damaging storms will not end at sunset on Saturday, and the cover of darkness will add to the danger of the situation, making it difficult to spot when storms are approaching.


Into Saturday night, cities likely to be in the path of the advancing line of severe thunderstorms include Knoxville, Tennessee; Birmingham, Huntsville and Mobile, Alabama; Atlanta; and Pensacola, Florida.

Strong storms may also extend to Augusta, Georgia; Greenville, South Carolina; and Asheville, North Carolina.

AccuWeather meteorologists are urging people in the storm's path to keep alert for rapidly changing weather conditions and heed all severe thunderstorm and tornado warnings and seek shelter as soon as they are issued.

Flights may be grounded, and landings could be delayed as the thunderstorms approach major airport hubs. The storms are likely to arrive in the Atlanta area toward sunset or shortly thereafter on Saturday evening.

The potential for damaging wind gusts will also exist outside of where severe thunderstorms erupt as the dynamic storm system moves along farther north through Saturday night. Gusts as high as 85 mph are expected to affect portions of the Ohio Valley, southern and central Appalachians and the piedmont areas of the Carolinas and Virginia.

Keep checking back on AccuWeather.com and stay tuned to the AccuWeather Network on DirecTV, Frontier and Verizon Fios.