On April 6, 2017, severe storms swept through northern Virginia, Maryland and Pennsylvania. Many reports of wind damage caused multiple roads to close for clearing. Widespread power outages caused schools to close early and halting bus routes. School officials sent out a message asking parents to pick up their children if they were able due to a possible delay from road closures. Trained weather spotters reported a funnel cloud in Gainesville, Virginia. A tree had fallen across a busy road never hitting the ground forcing vehicles to go underneath the tree in Fairfax, Virginia. Trees had fallen on power lines causing major power outages. Nickel-sized hail was reported in Stafford County.
These severe storms that ravaged the Mid-Atlantic came in three significant storms. The first storm was mainly rain which occurred around 8:00 AM Thursday morning. The second storm happened around 1:00 PM Thursday afternoon which is the storm that carried the strong winds and possible tornadoes. The third storm happened just after 3:00 PM which carried nickel-sized hail and another round of damaging winds.
The National Weather Service in Baltimore/ Washington will survey the damage in the coming days to determine if there were tornadoes or just straight-line winds. These storms hit during the after-lunch hour and caught many people on the road. Thankfully, no deaths have been reported.
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ⓒ 2017 Meteorologist Brandie Cantrell