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Severe storms to strike the South again as millions in Texas could see damaging winds and hail

<i>CNN Weather</i><br/>More severe weather is expected to impact the South on Friday.
CNN Weather
More severe weather is expected to impact the South on Friday.

By Aya Elamroussi and Dave Hennen, CNN

Parts of the South are yet again at risk of facing severe storms Friday that could bring damaging winds, large hail and the possibility of tornadoes to millions in north-central Texas.

More than 12 million people in Texas, including the Dallas-Fort Worth area, are under a significant risk for severe thunderstorms, according to the Storm Prediction Center. The Level 3 of 5 threat includes Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio and Austin.

The state could see baseball-size hail and wind gusts reaching hurricane speeds of 74 mph or higher. A few tornadoes are also possible into the afternoon and early evening, forecasters at the National Weather Service in Fort Worth said.

Much of the rest of east Texas is under Level 2 threat, including Houston, the Weather Prediction Center said.

“Large hail will be the primary threat with supercells, with a couple of instances of 3+ inch stones possible,” the prediction center warned.

Large hail, high winds and a couple of isolated tornadoes are possible along the borders with Oklahoma and Arkansas, according to the prediction center.

The severe weather threat comes as another storm system triggered tornado reports, gusty winds and dangerously large hail in Texas and Florida this week.

On Thursday evening, the storm whipped up a tornado near Hosford, Florida, after which a dozen homes were destroyed and about 20 others were damaged, according to Rhonda Lewis, the head of Liberty County Emergency Management.

Six of the seven tornado reports recorded Thursday were across the Florida Panhandle, while one was in southwestern Georgia.

In addition to the tennis-ball-sized hail that bombarded parts of Texas and Florida on Wednesday, hail 1.75 inches wide was also reported Thursday in multiple Florida cities, and thousands in northern Florida were left without power.

More than 50 million under storm alerts

The two storm systems hitting the US on Friday have put more than 50 million people in the South and mid-Atlantic under thunderstorm risks.

The various levels of threats extend across the entire eastern half of Texas, where storms should develop this afternoon. There’s a threat of tornadoes before the storms form a line and race across the eastern part of the state in the evening.

Storms forming across North Texas, including the Dallas area, this afternoon will have the greatest threat to produce a few tornadoes.

By the evening, the threat will transition to more of a damaging wind risk, which could lead to widespread power outages.

As for the Southeast, there’s a marginal risk for thunderstorms stretching from South Florida northward to Virginia. The warned area includes Miami, Jacksonville and Tampa in Florida; Savannah, Georgia; Charleston and Raleigh in the Carolinas; and Roanoke, Virginia.

By Saturday, most of the severe weather will be winding down. While there’s still some uncertainty in the forecast, New Orleans, Montgomery and Mobile, Alabama, and Orlando and Tampa, Florida, could see damaging winds, hail and even an isolated tornado.

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CNN’s Robert Shackelford and Amy Simonson contributed to this report.

Article Topic Follows: CNN-Weather/Environment

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