Posted: Apr 13, 2020 / 12:10 AM EDT
/ Updated: Apr 13, 2020 / 12:10 AM EDT

RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — A major storm system is expected to sweep across central North Carolina Monday, bringing the threat of tornadoes and damaging winds.

The National Weather Service of Raleigh said the storm has the potential to be the strongest one central North Carolina has seen since 2011.

“We’re talking about the possibility of severe thunderstorms capable of producing large hail, damaging winds and also tornadoes and some of those tornadoes could be strong,” said James Morrow, a meteorologist at the NWS of Raleigh.

LOCAL ALERT DAY: Severe storms with damaging wind and tornadoes expected Monday in Central NC

Morrow told CBS17 the highest risk for damage will be between sunrise and noon on Monday.

“Even some of the rain showers could have 40 to 50 mph gusts that are capable of bringing down trees and power lines and knocking out power for quite some time,” he said.

Forecasters in Raleigh said a storm like this is rare and shows similarities to the 2011 tornado outbreak.

“Our confidence is unusually high with this event. We will never guarantee a significant number of tornadoes, but if it were to happen, it’s going to be in a set up like this,” Morrow explained of how severe this storm could be.

He added, “We try not to compare events because every event is unique. But any time you have these ingredients coming together with this type of damaging wind and tornado threat, we take it very seriously. We want everyone to know that this could be very high impact.”

LOCAL ALERT DAY: Severe storms with damaging wind and tornadoes expected Monday in Central NC

If you haven’t already — now is the time to make an emergency plan for you and your family. You should also designate a place in your home or apartment in case you need to seek shelter.

“That usually is the lowest part of your building, usually downstairs in an enclosed area with no windows,” said Morrow. “A lot of times that ends up being the bottom floor in the center of the house with as many walls between you and the storm.”

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