- Associated Press - Wednesday, April 5, 2017

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) - The Latest on severe weather in North Carolina (all times local):

7 p.m.

The National Weather Service is warning residents in central North Carolina to be sure they can receive severe weather alerts overnight.

A statement from forecasters in Raleigh says severe storms are expected to pass through the region during the night Wednesday. They suggest having a weather radio or some sort of device to wake up residents if the situation arises.

The forecast says scattered thunderstorms were expected to reach the area Wednesday evening and expand into severe storms starting in the western piedmont by midnight. A broken line of severe storms will move across central North Carolina by 3 a.m. Thursday, with storms impacting areas east of Interstate 95 by 7 a.m.

7:47 a.m.

North Carolina is bracing for severe weather that could bring heavy rain, strong winds, snow and even tornadoes to parts of the state.

Local media outlets report that a first wave of rainfall is expected to move across the state starting at around midday Wednesday.

But bolstered by a cold front, forecasters warn a second wave of precipitation later in the day could turn severe around the evening commute. Rainfall is expected to be heavier, accompanied by possible hail, damaging winds and even isolated tornadoes.

Forecasters say the most severe weather will likely be overnight Wednesday into early Thursday morning.

The National Weather Service is predicting widespread thunderstorms across much of Alabama and Georgia and into the Florida Panhandle and southwestern South Carolina.

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