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The Latest: Confidence rises that twisters will strike South

ATLANTA – The Latest on the threat of severe weather in the Southeast (all times are local):

11:20 pm

Forecasters say that there is increasing confidence that strong tornadoes may rumble in parts of the South — mainly in the north of Alabama.

In a mid-morning update Monday, the national Storm Prediction Center said the risk appeared increasingly likely for “several tornadic supercells” through the northern parts of Alabama.

The region is in the bulls-eye of a larger area under the threat of severe weather Monday afternoon, that also parts of Tennessee, Mississippi and Georgia.

Twenty-nine million people face a threat of severe storms Monday that can lead to damage from hail, high winds and even tornadoes to the southeast of the United States.

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8:20 pm

Schools close early in the southeastern region of the United States because of the threat of severe weather such as tornadoes.

More than a dozen school systems in north Alabama announced that they dismiss students early Monday because of a line of storms forecasters say will move through the space. Spread early closings to expand in middle Tennessee.

Other school systems say they’re monitoring conditions and can release the students early when conditions warrant. Birmingham city offices close at noon because of the threat.

The National Weather Service says thunderstorms are developing for an approaching storm system. They say tornadoes, damaging winds and hail as large as tennis balls are all possible.

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7:15 pm

Twenty-nine million people face a threat of severe storms Monday that can lead to damage from hail, high winds and even tornadoes to the southeast of the United States.

The national Storm Prediction Center said that large parts of Alabama, Georgia and Tennessee and a small part of the north-east of the Mississippi would be under a tornado threat Monday afternoon and Monday night. Forecasters said enhanced risk of severe storms covers Nashville and Chattanooga in Tennessee; and Birmingham, Huntsville and Tuscaloosa in Alabama.

In Alabama, tornadoes, hail the size of tennis balls and 70 mph winds were the most likely to occur in parts of central and northern Alabama, including all of metro Birmingham.

In Georgia, the highest risk of tornadoes is in the northwest of Georgia, including Dalton, Rome and new york.

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