Severe Storms Threaten July 4 Travel and Festivities Across US

As the extended July Fourth holiday weekend proceeds, severe storms are set to take aim across a wide swath of the US from New York and Pennsylvania down to Arkansas.

The strongest storms will target Kentucky and Tennessee, potentially bringing damaging wind gusts of more than 65 mph and pingpong-ball-size hail — although a tornado or two can't be ruled out, NBC News reported.

Las Vegas flooding
Flooding Twitter

On Sunday, 51 million people in the path risk experiencing severe thunderstorms from the afternoon through the evening. The risk area includes Nashville and Memphis, Tennessee; Louisville, Kentucky; Philadelphia; Baltimore; Charlotte, North Carolina; and Washington, D.C.

Widespread Flooding

Flooding was reported in Clinton County, New York. New York Gov. Kathy Hochul said rain over the past 12 hours led to dangerous conditions in certain areas, NBC News reported.

"I am closely monitoring the situation and have directed my team to assist local officials however necessary," Hochul said in a statement on Sunday.

"We have already deployed personnel with the State's Office of Emergency Management to monitor the situation and provide support to local leaders."

Scattered showers will persist throughout Sunday, with the strongest storms set to begin in Kentucky and Tennessee after 2 p.m. CT. The threat will persist into the evening and overnight as the line of storms shifts into the Appalachians.

US storm
American flags partially torn from their poles fly as a storm producing strong winds passes through Washington, U.S., March 2, 2018. Reuters

In Chicago, heavy rain caused delays at NASCAR Street Race Weekend. "We are in a holding pattern for the #GrantPark220 until conditions improve," NASCAR tweeted on Sunday evening.

The storm system will target the Carolinas and the mid-Atlantic region on Monday, affecting 29 million people in Philadelphia; Baltimore; and Charlotte and Raleigh, North Carolina. Damaging wind, large hail and a tornado or two will be possible, NBC News reported.

As the July Fourth holiday approaches, the Northeast and the Southeast can expect scattered showers and temperatures in the 80s and the 90s, respectively.

Around 63 million people coast to coast remained under heat alerts Sunday afternoon, including those living in Raleigh; Charlotte; Atlanta; Tallahassee, Florida; Montgomery, Alabama; New Orleans; Corpus Christi, Texas; Phoenix and Tucson, Arizona; Bakersfield and Sacramento, California; and Portland, Oregon.