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Thunderstorms to be announced by severity

As of this week, the National Weather Service has changed how hazard information is communicated with the public. From now on, thunderstorms will be announced according to three tiers of impact.

“Severe thunderstorms can be life-threatening, but not all severe storms are the same,” according to the announcement, which lists conditions ranging from tornadoes and hail to cloud-to-ground lightning and flash floods.

The three categories begin with “base” severe thunderstorms, which include the following criteria: quarter-sized hail and/or 58 mph thunderstorm winds. This will not activate a wireles...