KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — An approaching cold front has prompted the Storm Prediction Center to rate the risk of severe storms Saturday over the Cumberland Plateau and Southeast Kentucky at 2 out of 5. The Tennessee Valley and points east of the valley remain under a level 1 out of 5 risk.
Weather AWARE coverage from the WATE 6 on Your Side Storm Team will begin at 11 p.m. Friday in advance of increasing winds in the Smokies overnight. We will remain Weather AWARE into the early afternoon hours of Saturday as storms come through.
A line of storms will move quickly across the region Saturday morning arriving around 8 a.m. to 9 a.m. ET for portions of the plateau, 10-11 a.m. across the valley, and around noon to 1 p.m. for the Smokies.
The threat for tornadoes is low, but not zero. There is a threat that some of these storms could be severe with damaging wind gusts and even a quick “spin-up” tornado cannot be ruled out.
A wind advisory with gusts up to 45 mph has been issued in places across the plateau into Kentucky. A high wind warning, with wind gusts of 65 mph or more, has been issued for elevations above 3,000 feet in the Smokies.
These winds are outside of and before any storms even arrive. They could cause some tree and/or limb damage. Power outages cannot be ruled out.
Visit the WATE 6 On Your Side Storm Forecast Blog for continuing coverage of weather across East Tennessee and Southeast Kentucky.