Another line of thunderstorms was headed toward the Charlotte region late Tuesday evening, but forecasters said this would be the area’s final threat of severe weather from a system that produced tornado and flash flood warnings throughout the day in the foothills and mountains.
The storms were expected to arrive in the Charlotte area sometime after 10 p.m.
National Weather Service meteorologists said computer models hinted that the storms could intensify as they reached the Interstate 77 corridor. At 8:15 p.m. Tuesday, the storms were in the Greenville-Spartanburg area and appeared to be strengthening. Flash flood warnings were in effect for several South Carolina counties near the Georgia border, where more than 3 inches of rain had been reported since midday.
A tornado watch remained in effect throughout much of the region until 1a.m. Wednesday, but authorities hadn’t reported any major damage late Tuesday. The tornado watch covered all Charlotte-area counties except Anson, Montgomery, Richmond and Stanly.
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Around 8 p.m., there were no severe thunderstorm or tornado warnings in effect across the western Carolinas. A few hours earlier, several strong thunderstorms moved northeast across the foothills, spawning warnings and sightings of funnel clouds in Cleveland, Burke and Caldwell counties. National Weather Service meteorologists said there were no reports that any of the funnel clouds touched down.
There were three reports of funnel clouds spotted during the afternoon – about 1:20 p.m. near Mooresboro in Cleveland County, about 2:10 p.m. southeast of Valdese in Burke County and around 2:30 p.m. near Granite Falls in Caldwell County. Caldwell County Schools officials delayed releasing students from schools until 3 p.m., when a storm responsible for a tornado warning in that county had passed to the northeast.
“It’s definitely not your typical fall weather,” said Mike Bettes, a Weather Channel meteorologist.
The same area of severe weather is blamed for two deaths and more than 250 reports of thunderstorm, tornado and hail damage Monday in the lower Mississippi Valley.
In Charlotte, Wednesday’s high could reach 73 degrees with a 10 percent chance of rain. Cleve R. Wootson Jr. contributed.