Storms dump rain across county, spur tornado warnings

August 15, 2012|By Scott Dance

Two tornado warnings were issued around Tuesday night in Baltimore County and parts of Carroll and Harford counties and northern Baltimore City as thunderstorms swept through the Baltimore area.

A flash flood warning was in effect for southern Baltimore County, northern Baltimore City and east central Howard County until 2:30 a.m. Wednesday. Trained weather spotters reported upward of 2 inches of rain within an area in some of the areas hardest hit by storms, causing urban flooding, according to the National Weather Service.

Reports on Twitter indicated hail the size of gumballs in parts of North Baltimore. Storm reports made to the weather service's Sterling, Va., office indicated 1-inch hail near Pimlico in northwest Baltimore and in Perry Hall, and 1.5-inch hail in Parkville.

Power outages reached 15,000 by about 11:15 p.m. Tuesday, with almost 11,000 of them in Baltimore County and 3,600 in Baltimore City, according to Baltimore Gas and Electric Co. By 1:45 a.m. Wednesday, the total number of outages reported by BGE was down to about 11,000, with 6,100 of them in Baltimore County and 3,800 in Baltimore City. Power had been restored to about 6,900 customers.

In Pikesville, Baltimore County fire officials reported on Twitter making multiple swift-water rescues because of the heavy rain. Rescues were also made in Towson, according to weather service storm reports.

A tornado warning means radar indicates rotation in a severe thunderstorm, but it doesn't mean touchdown of a tornado has been confirmed.

Follow @MdWeather on Twitter for further updates.

Some tweets indicated confusion over text messages some may have received about the tornado warning. For more information on the messages, read this blog post about National Weather Service severe weather text alerts, which launched in May.

Have a weather question? E-mail me at or tweet to @MdWeather.

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