Storms pelt Southeast with large hail for second day

CHICAGO (Reuters) – Severe thunderstorms storms that raked the Southeast with scattered tornadoes, large hail and high winds on Saturday reemerged across the region on Sunday after an overnight lull, meteorologists said.

The storms on Sunday pelted parts of Georgia, Alabama and South Carolina with hail stones, some as large as tennis balls, but no serious damage was immediately reported.

“The storms abated overnight but with the heat of the day Sunday, they reignited and are very strong, and some are severe across Alabama and Georgia,” said Jack Hales, lead forecaster for the National Weather Service’s Storm Prediction Center in Norman, Oklahoma. “Storms will continue through the afternoon.”

Hail stones on Saturday measured as large as softballs in Georgia, and on Sunday there were reports of hail the size of tennis balls in South Carolina.

The storms, known to have caused only minor wind damage so far, were expected to begin subsiding after dark on Sunday as temperatures dip and the air mass becomes more stable, Hales said.

The world’s largest hail on record, measured at 8 inches in diameter, fell in Vivian, South Dakota, on July 23, 2010.

Separate storms currently developing over southern Arkansas may also produce hail, Hales said.

To the north, forecasts were calling for “significant snowfall” in part of the Ohio and Great Lakes regions, he said, adding, “It will certainly be cold enough.”

(Reporting by Eric Johnson; Editing by Steve Gorman)

Storms pelt Southeast with large hail for second day