Nightly News   |  April 03, 2014

Tornado Threat Kicks Off April

Storms are expected to roll through the Midwest and Mississippi Valley.

Share This:

This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> the weather is making news in this country tonight, from texas on up into the midwest , millions are facing the threat of more severe weather , including the first real threat of this season from tornadoes. that's on top of damaging storms just last night and earlier today. weather channel meteorologist mike seidel following it all from north little rock , arkansas, where they're under a tornado watch presently. mike, good evening.

>> reporter: good evening. that watch is until midnight tonight. it was a long, cold, snowy winter here in the midwest . that put the cap on the tornado tally for march at only 21. only 20% of average. but that threat for twisters is back tonight and friday. hail the size of golf balls thunder down from missouri to kansas. damaging homes and cars. triggering a threat of severe storms and tornadoes from texas into the midwest . an ef1 tornado tore through university city , missouri, this morning.

>> early this morning, it was the sound of this storm that woke everybody up.

>> reporter: 100 homes damaged, trees down and nearly 7,000 people left without power. in st. louis, the rain came fast and was heavy. flooding streets and stranding cars.

>> it's more than what the drainage system can handle at one time. you have the flash flooding and before you know it, you're in it.

>> reporter: at least seven states and more than 50 million people are threatened with either tornadoes or wind damage. in southern minnesota, a bizarre weather combination.

>> we're in a blizzard warning . then you get a tornado. just weird.

>> reporter: this family's shed was sliced in half. the tornado scattered debris throughout their yard and nailed a piece of wood directly to the side of a building. several states will remain under a tornado watch through most of the night.

>> a lot of places could get damaging winds maybe gusting over 70 miles per hour. a very dangerous situation in the overnight hours when you can't see the tornadoes coming.

>> reporter: and here's where you need to be vigilant tonight. check out the orange zone in the midwest . tornado watches from here to st. louis until midnight, shifting east overnight. in the upper midwest , yet another winter storm in early april. we have winter storm warnings, minneapolis to marquette where they could see over a foot of snow tonight. and the storms will move east tomorrow. but there's more of a straight-line wind damage threat.

>> mike seidel , thanks.