Latest Severe Weather Updates Blog

Mar 2, 2012

The National Weather Service has issued a Tornado Watch for Fayette County through 9 PM EST.

Get the latest forecast and weather information for Lexington, KY from the National Weather Service.

Updates below.

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5:24 PM - Clark and Madison counties under a Severe Thunderstorm Warning until 5:30 PM EST.

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5:18 PM - Severe Thunderstorm Warning for Anderson, Fayette, Scott, and Woodford counties, until 5:56 PM EST.

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5:02 PM EST - Tornado Warning for Fayette, East Jessamine, and Woodford counties has been canceled.

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5:01 PM EST - Severe Thunderstorm Warning for Bourbon county until 5:15 PM EST.

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4:41 PM EST - Tornado warning for Fayette, Jessamine, and Woodford counties until 5:15 PM EST.

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4:31 PM - The National Weather Service has added a Severe Thunderstorm Warning  for Fayette, Garrard, and Jessamine counties, ending at 5:12 PM EST. 

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4:08 PM - The National Weather Service has issued a Severe Thunderstorm Warning for Boyle, Mercer, Marion, Washington counties, ending at 4:37 PM EST.

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3:15 PM - Lexington Rescue Mission Open

The Lexington Rescue Mission at 444 Glen Arvin Avenue will be open from 4 to 8 pm for anyone seeking relief from the severe weather.

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3:12 PM - UK Closes Due to Weather

(press release)

The National Weather Service has issued a severe weather warning for Central Kentucky that includes heavy rain, lightning, significant wind, hail and possible tornados. This storm is expected to be its strongest between 4 and 8 p.m. Friday, March 2.

In anticipation of this weather and the safety of all students and employees, the University of Kentucky is releasing all employees, except essential personnel, and canceling all classes and activities as of 3 p.m. for the remainder of the evening. Anyone remaining on campus after 3 p.m. should use extreme caution during the storm and seek identified safety shelters.

UK hospitals and clinics remain open. Ambulatory clinics will maintain normal operating hours. This should be considered a Plan B weather emergency for UK HealthCare employees.

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2:41 PM - August: Osage County Canceled Tonight, 3/2

August: Osage County is canceled tonight, 3/2. Everyone with tickets to tonight's performance will be reissued tickets to another production. Contact the box office this weekend or next week for details: 859.257.4929.

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1:58 PM - Fayette County Health Department Closing All Locations at 2 PM Friday

The Lexington-Fayette County Health Department and HealthFirst Bluegrass is closing all of its locations at 2 PM today.

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1:55 PM - Dance Blue Postponed Until 8 AM Saturday

(press release)

In the interest of safety, UK’s DanceBlue dance marathon has been postponed until 8 AM Saturday, March 3. Dancer registration will begin at 7 a.m. at Memorial Coliseum and the marathon will begin at 8 AM The marathon will conclude at 8 PM with family and memorial hours beginning at 5 PM.

The university is continuing to monitor the weather situation and updates can be found on UK’s news website, UKNow, at http://www.uky.edu/uknow.

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1:50 PM - Fayette County is under a Tornado Watch until 9 PM EST

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1:49 PM - UK Cancels Classes After 3 PM Friday

(press release)

LEXINGTON, Ky.  The threat of severe weather has prompted the University of Kentucky to cancel classes.  A release from the UK Administration states:

The National Weather Service has issued a severe weather warning for the central Kentucky that includes heavy rain, lightning, significant wind, hail and possible tornados. This storm is expected to be its strongest between 4:00 and 8:00 p.m. In anticipation of this weather and the safety of all students and employees, the University of Kentucky is releasing all employees, except essential personnel, and canceling all classes and activities as of 3:00 p.m. for the remainder of the evening.

Supervisors should use their judgment in releasing employees earlier in the event they must travel further distances.  Anyone remaining on campus after 3:00 p.m. should use extreme caution during the storm and seek identified safety shelters.

Hospitals and Clinics will remain open.

WUKY has also confirmed that Kentucky U-S Senator Rand Paul's scheduled 4 p.m. speech in the Whitehall classroom building has been canceled.

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12:50 PM - Lexington Mayor Gray encourages businesses to allow employees to go home early

(press release)

Current radar information indicates the greatest potential for severe weather today is between 4 and 8 PM.

Mayor Jim Gray is encouraging local businesses to allow their employees to go home early. City employees who are not involved in emergency response will be allowed to leave their offices at 2 PM, Gray said. He said one reason he’s asking businesses to act is because local schools are releasing students early. “We want to get everyone home safely and to avoid traffic back-ups,” Gray said.

The Mayor also asked citizens to secure all outdoor trash containers, which often blow into the street and cause damage during high winds.

Citizens are also encouraged to: 

Limit travel this afternoon and evening.

Stay tuned to a local television and/or radio station for the latest weather information.

In the event of damaging winds, get inside and move to a basement or an interior closet, away from windows. Public employees are on alert in the Division of Emergency Management, Code Enforcement, Police, Streets and Roads, Fire and Emergency Services, the Health Department and in the Property Valuation Administrator’s Office. Back-up crews are on stand-by.

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12:39 PM - Kentucky Emergency Management: "Potentially Dangerous Situation"

Kentucky Emergency Management officials are stressing that Friday's storms present a potentially dangerous situation and residents should have plans in place should severe weather strike.

John Hetzel with KEM says Lexington could see the full impact of the storms between 4 PM and 8 PM, but conditions are right for severe weather to arise at any time. A threat exists for upper level tornados, which could touch down with less warning. Hetzel says state cabinets have been notified and emergency services are ready to respond. 

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11:01 AM - FCPS to Dismiss Two Hours Early

The threat of severe weather has prompted Fayette County Public Schools to issue the following directive:

In light of the pending storm, all Fayette County Public Schools will be dismissing two hours early. In addition, the afternoon session of Early Start has been canceled.  Students in the morning Early Start session, which normally dismisses at 10:30 a.m., can either be picked up at school by their families or will be brought home on the bus along with the other students from their elementary schools in accordance with the early dismissal schedule. All evening and afterschool activities are canceled.

The following elementary schools will dismiss at 12:35 p.m.: (normally 2:35 p.m.)

Arlington, Ashland, Athens-Chilesburg, Booker T. Washington Academy, Breckinridge, Clays Mill, Deep Springs, Dixie, Garden Springs, Glendover, James Lane Allen, Julius Marks, Lansdowne, Liberty, Maxwell, Meadowthorpe, Millcreek, Picadome, Rosa Parks, Russell Cave, Sandersville, Southern, Squires, Stonewall, Tates Creek, Veterans Park, Wellington, William Wells Brown, and Yates.

The following schools will dismiss at 1:15p.m.: (normally 3:15 p.m.)

Cardinal Valley, Cassidy, Harrison, Mary Todd, and Northern elementaries and all high schools.

The following middle schools will dismiss at 1:45 p.m.: (normally 3:45 p.m.)

School for the Creative and Performing Arts at Bluegrass and Lexington Traditional Magnet School.

The following middle schools will dismiss at 1:55 p.m.: (normally 3:55 p.m.)

Beaumont, Bryan Station Middle, Crawford, Edythe J. Hayes, Jessie Clark, Leestown, Morton, Southern Middle, Tates Creek Middle and Winburn

Opportunity Middle College and Martin Luther King Jr. Academy will dismiss at 1 p.m. (normally 4 p.m.)

The Learning Center at Linlee will dismiss at 2:10 p.m. (normally 4:10 p.m.)

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10:41 AM - NWS Predicts Moderate Risk for Severe Storms Across KY

LOUISVILLE, Ky.  Forecasters warned that a large section of Kentucky looked to be at risk of severe storms later Friday that could bring tornadoes.

The National Weather Service said there was a moderate risk of severe storms across all of Kentucky, as well as for most of Tennessee and portions of Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Mississippi, Alabama and Georgia. But it says the highest risk stretches across portions of central and western Kentucky and northern Tennessee.

The weather system features abundant Gulf moisture, abnormally warm temperatures and an approaching cold front that will trigger the storms.

Forecasters say the most likely target for the severe weather could be along the Interstate 65 corridor in west-central Kentucky during the early afternoon. The threat will move east into the Bluegrass region of Kentucky in the late afternoon. Forecasters say storms will be capable of producing hail, damaging winds and tornadoes.

Gov. Steve Beshear warned Kentuckians to be prepared for the next round of storms, just two days after tornadoes raked the commonwealth. Beshear's office said the most significant damage from Wednesday's storms appeared to be in Elizabethtown and Hodgenville. No deaths were attributed to the storms in Kentucky but there were several injuries.

Beshear said the state's emergency management officials will closely monitor any outbreak of severe weather Friday and will remain in close contact with local officials.

Additionally, a flash flood watch will be in effect from Friday afternoon through Friday night for eastern Kentucky counties south of Interstate 64.

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