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Austin area at risk of strong storms and hail this afternoon and evening

Dark rain clouds fill the sky with the tops of trees visible along the bottom of the photo.
Renee Dominguez
KUT News
The National Weather Service recommends that people have multiple ways of staying informed about the weather.

A batch of strong thunderstorms could hit the Austin area Tuesday afternoon and evening. The main threats are damaging winds, hail up to the size of tennis balls, frequent lightning and a possible tornado, according to the National Weather Service.

Storms are expected to blow through the Austin area between 8 and 11 p.m. Counties with the greatest risk of severe weather include Travis, Williamson, Hays, Bastrop and Caldwell.

Watch versus warning

A severe thunderstorm watch means storms are capable of forming, and you should be prepared to take action if it progresses into a warning. A severe thunderstorm warning means there is "imminent danger to life and property," and you should take shelter immediately, according to the NWS.

Similarly, a tornado watch means that conditions are favorable for tornadoes — be prepared to take shelter if it becomes a warning, which happens when a tornado has actually been sighted or indicated by a weather radar.

As storms continue to develop, here's how you can stay informed:

Follow the latest updates from the National Weather Service below:

Chelsey Zhu is the digital producer at KUT. Got a tip? You can email her at