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UPDATE: Vinton County under severe thunderstorm warning, tornado watch

May 1, 2012

The National Weather Service in Charleston has issued a severe thunderstorm warning for Western Athens County, Northern Jackson County, Northwestern Meigs County and Vinton County until 8:30 p.m. This includes the cities of Nelsonville, Albany, Wellston, McArthur and Lake hope state park.

A 7:28 p.m. National Weather Service Doppler radar indicated a cluster of severe thunderstorms capable of producing golf ball size hail and damaging winds in excess of 60 mph. This storm was located 15 miles west of Wellston, or 10 miles northeast of Waverly and moving east at 30 mph.

Very heavy rain will also fall from this severe thunderstorm and will cause water to pond on roads and quickly fill roadside ditches and small streams.

Please report significant weather to the National Weather Service by calling toll free 877-633-6772 or the Vinton County Sheriff’s Office at 740-596-5242 when it is safe to do so.

A tornado watch remains in effect until 1 a.m. Wednesday.

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The National Weather Service says a strong thunderstorm will affect Northern Vinton and Western Athens counties in the next few minutes.

At 7:09 p.m., a strong thunderstorm was located 13 miles east of Chillicothe, moving east at 35 mph.

Wind gusts to 50 mph and hail up to nickle-sized are possible with this storm, along with very heavy rainfall.

This storm will be near Creola around 7:35 p.m., Zaleski around 7:40 p.m. and Lake Hope State Park around 7:45 p.m.

In hilly terrain, there are hundreds of low water crossings that are potentially dangerous in heavy rain. Do not attempt to travel across flooded roads. Find alternate routes; it takes only a few inches of swiftly flowing water to carry vehicles away.

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