We are less than two weeks into the new year, and we are already experiencing some truly wild weather. A major storm is currently making its way up the East Coast, bringing with it torrential rain, high winds, and snow to the Northeast. The storm is coming from the west and has already covered large parts of Texas in a blanket of fluffy, white snow.
Now, it is aiming for the Sunshine State. According to news reports, millions of residents from Florida, Georgia, and South Carolina are under a tornado watch. Some tornados have already been reported.
Over 9 million people in Florida, Georgia, North and South Carolina are under a tornado watch issued by the Storm Prediction Center. Twelve tornadoes were reported across Florida, Alabama and Georgia on Tuesday morning, causing significant damage and prompting rescues in Florida’s panhandle.
Guests visiting Walt Disney World Resort need to be aware that Central Florida has fallen under that tornado watch. According to WESH2 — a local Orlando news station — the area is under “considerable threat for strong to severe storms.”
The timing of the worst of the weather will be late afternoon and evening. The Storm Prediction Center (which issues watches and severe outlooks) has elevated part of our area to a level 3-5 risk for numerous strong to severe storms.
Meteorologist Eric Burris tweeted an image of where a tornado watch has been issued.
Here’s where the Tornado Watch has been posted… We’re watching, and will keep you updated…
Here's where the Tornado Watch has been posted… We're watching, and will keep you updated… pic.twitter.com/5LqWxk6mEh
— Eric Burris (@EricBurrisWESH) January 9, 2024
At this time, the most concerning weather is damaging winds that could hit the area. However, meteorologists have not ruled out the possibility of a strong tornado. It is also possible that the area could see more than one tornado before the storm is over.
Wesh2 reports that Orange County and Osceola County — the counties where Walt Disney World Resort is located — will experience the most severe weather from 4 p.m. until 7 p.m. During that time, winds could reach speeds of 55 miles per hour or higher.
The tornado watch will be in effect until 9 p.m. tonight.
Should the weather become dangerous, please make sure that you listen to all instructions given to you by cast members. They may tell you to seek shelter, and will direct you to indoor locations. Remain calm and do as instructed. Cast members are trained to keep guests safe during severe weather, so it is important that we make their jobs as easy as possible.
This is a breaking news story.