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Posted at 03:01 PM ET, 02/24/2012

Big cold front bringing rain, storms then big winds (LIVE BLOG)

Overview: Temperatures have clearly underachieved today, only reaching the 50s in the immediate metro area after forecasts of 70s. The cool wedge over the region has squashed the severe thunderstorm potential for D.C. and points north. However, as close as by as Stafford county in Va. and St. Mary’s county southern Maryland, temperatures have reached 70 (not to mention 80 in Richmond). It’s that area and points south under a tornado watch this afternoon. Once the rain moves through the region, then howling winds blow in along and behind the cold front.

4:30 p.m. update: With severe weather having moved off to the Eastern Shore (a tornado warning is in effect for North Central Wicomico county in SE Md through 4:45 p.m.), the cold front is now closing in on the immediate area. Winds are picking up in western Virginia and West Virginia with gusts coming in over 40 mph. This is the last live blog update. Stay tuned for our PM forecast update.

4:05 p.m. update: For areas west of the Bay, the severe weather threat is about over. Storms will soon gradually pull away from southern St. Mary’s county and the heaviest storms are now over the Delmarva Peninsula. Patuxent River did report penny size hail with the thunderstorm that came through.

Keep reading for earlier storm reports...

Earlier storm updates

4:00 p.m. update: The worst of the storms now stretch from southern St. Mary’s county northeastward across the Bay. The Twitter feed for St. Mary’s county indicates major power outages in Calvert county from the storms, with 3,500 customers without power.

3:30 p.m update: The severe thunderstorm warning in southern Maryland has been trimmed back a bit on the west side (no longer in effect for southern PG and eastern Charles co), but expanded to include western Charles county, and much of St. Mary’s and Calvert counties..It has also been extended until 4 p.m. Storms continue to affect the area from just west of Leonardtown (St. Mary’s county) up to near Prince Frederick (Calvert county).

3:15 p.m. update: The severe thunderstorm warning in southern Maryland (see below) remain in effect until 3:45 p.m. The storm was located 5 miles east of Waldorf at 3:09 p.m. moving east at 25 mph. In path: Aquasco, Dunkirk, and Huntington (see full list).

3:00 p.m. update: National Weather Service cautions storm in southern Maryland is “dangerous” and urges you to seek shelter if in its path.

2:50 p.m. update: A severe thunderstorm warning is in effect for N Charles, NW St. Mary’s, S Prince George’s, and S Anne Arundel counties through 3:45 pm. Winds to 60 mph are possible. In the severe storm’s path: Waldorf, Prince Frederick, North Beach. The storm is moving E at 25 mph, right now over La Plata. Hail is also possible with the storm.

By  |  03:01 PM ET, 02/24/2012

 
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