Severe weather window today in Metro Detroit: When to expect storms, biggest threats

Severe thunderstorm watch issued until 1 p.m.

We’re tracking the potential for strong to severe storms this afternoon in Metro Detroit.

On the last full day of summer in Michigan, storms are expected, and some could pack a serious punch. Here’s what 4Warn Weather meteorologist Brandon Roux is tracking:

⛈️ Tracking severe weather risk today

A cold front will be approaching throughout the late morning which could be a spark for not only scattered storms, but a few strong to severe storms as well. Eyes to the skies from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. as the Storm Prediction Center has placed areas along and south of I-94 in a Marginal Risk for severe storms.

A severe thunderstorm watch has been issued for Southeast Michigan until 1 p.m. Wednesday.

Related: Severe weather in Michigan: What each risk level means

That’s the weakest in the risk category but a small handful of damaging wind producing storms may pop down river down to the Ohio border. There is a Slight Risk or better bet for severe storms to fire in Lenawee and Monroe counties midday and the threat for the worst of it all falls south into Northern Ohio off of Lake Erie. The tornado threat is very low, but it is not zero…especially for areas south of I-94.

We will certainly be watching Exact Track 4D Radar closely and keep you posted on the air, online, and on the 4 Warn Weather app. Conditions will begin to cool as the north winds pick up late, but it will become less threatening later in the afternoon and evening.

(Track live radar in the video player above)

Paul Gross reminds us: If you have outdoor plans, remember that the strongest wind gusts frequently occur out ahead of the storm before the rain arrives, so do not wait until the first drops to head indoors. Also remember that if you can see lightning or hear thunder…no matter how distant it is…that lightning is close enough to strike you.

The storms have torrential downpours, but their fast movement should mitigate most flood concerns. Obviously, clogged storm drains or other factors unique to a certain area could result in some isolated flooding, but I do not expect a widespread flood event.

We’re tracking the potential for strong to severe storms this afternoon in Metro Detroit.

⛈️ Safety tips during a storm

  • Stay at least 20 feet away from downed power lines and anything they are in contact with, including puddles of water and fences. Keep children and pets away too.
  • Be extremely cautious near metal fences, which conduct electricity, following a severe storm. Electric current will be the strongest where a downed power line is touching a metal fence. Even a connecting fence several backyards away can be energized and dangerous.
  • Never cross yellow barrier tape. It may be around downed power lines.
  • Never drive across downed power lines. If a power line falls on your vehicle, remain inside your car until emergency help arrives.
  • A live power line may spark and whip around as it looks for a ground. A ground is the earth or something touching the earth, like a fence or a tree. A live wire that has found its ground may lie silently, but it is still dangerous. Report a downed power line online, on the DTE Energy Mobile App or call us immediately at 800-477-4747.
  • Cable or telephone lines can be energized if they come in contact with electrical lines. Contact with any energized power line can be fatal.
  • Never use a portable generator inside a home or business. It emits carbon monoxide, which can be deadly. Keep it outside, away from windows and doors, so the fumes won’t come in.

More: How to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning from portable generators


About the Authors:

Ken Haddad is the digital content and audience manager for WDIV / ClickOnDetroit.com. He also authors the Morning Report Newsletter and various other newsletters. He's been with WDIV since 2013. He enjoys suffering through Lions games on Sundays in the fall.