The National Weather Service just issued a "SEVERE THUNDERSTORM WARNING" for all of NYC and Nassau County until 8:30 p.m., warning of "WINDS UP TO 70 MPH AND QUARTER SIZE HAIL POSSIBLE." [See photos of the big clouds!] They stressed that the storm is dangerous, saying:
THIS IS A DANGEROUS STORM. IF YOU ARE IN ITS PATH... PREPARE IMMEDIATELY FOR DAMAGING WINDS... DESTRUCTIVE HAIL... AND DEADLY CLOUD TO GROUND LIGHTNING. PEOPLE OUTSIDE SHOULD MOVE TO A SHELTER... PREFERABLY INSIDE A STRONG BUILDING BUT AWAY FROM WINDOWS.
IN ADDITION TO LARGE HAIL AND DAMAGING WINDS... CONTINUOUS CLOUD TO GROUND LIGHTNING IS OCCURRING WITH THIS STORM. MOVE INDOORS IMMEDIATELY! LIGHTNING IS ONE OF NATURES NUMBER ONE KILLERS. REMEMBER... IF YOU CAN HEAR THUNDER... YOU ARE CLOSE ENOUGH TO BE STRUCK BY LIGHTNING.
THIS STORM HAS A HISTORY OF PRODUCING DESTRUCTIVE WINDS AND LARGE DAMAGING HAIL. SEEK SHELTER NOW INSIDE A STURDY STRUCTURE AND STAY AWAY FROM WINDOWS!
It could be a derecho, which is when wind gusts organize along a line of thunderstorms that form along a fast moving front... when those gusts get organized they can be pretty damaging. Unlike the swirling winds inside a thunderstorm, the winds of a derecho flow in one direction.
There are power outages upstate, and other NY counties are under tornado warnings. Be safe!
UPDATE, 7:37 p.m.: The Mayor's Office just Tweeted a gloomy photo, saying, "Severe storm headed toward NYC. Now is the time to get inside."
UPDATE, 8:36 p.m.:NY1 weather is reporting that "All thunderstorm warnings are over for the 5 boroughs. Lingering showers and weak storms will linger until around 11 p.m."