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High Wind Warning issued for Fairfax County ahead of Saturday storm

U.S., Virginia and Fairfax County flags blow in wind (staff photo by Jay Westcott)

The time to get any patio furniture and other loose, outdoor objects inside is now.

At 2:29 p.m. today (Friday), the National Weather Service issued a High Wind Warning for the D.C. area, including Fairfax County, in anticipation of an encroaching storm.

Set to take effect from noon tomorrow (Saturday) until midnight, the alert warns of wind gusts that could reach up to 60 mph, raising the potential for power outages and travel difficulties.

…HIGH WIND WARNING IN EFFECT FROM NOON SATURDAY TO MIDNIGHT EDT SATURDAY NIGHT…

* WHAT…Southwest winds 20 to 30 mph with gusts up to 50 mph Saturday afternoon, becoming northwest 25 to 35 mph with gusts up to 60 mph Saturday evening.

* WHERE…Portions of central and northern Maryland, The District of Columbia, and northern Virginia.

* WHEN…From noon Saturday to midnight EDT Saturday night. The strongest winds are expected Saturday evening.

* IMPACTS…Damaging winds will blow down trees and power lines. Widespread power outages are expected. Travel will be difficult, especially for high profile vehicles.

“People should avoid being outside in forested areas and around trees and branches,” the NWS said. “If possible, remain in the lower levels of your home during the windstorm, and avoid windows. Use caution if you must drive.”

The storm has been moving east after slamming California with heavy winds, rain and snow earlier this week. Nearly 90 million people across 21 states are under a hazardous weather alert, as the Midwest and some Southern states face the risk of tornadoes just a week after one killed at least 26 people in Mississippi and Alabama.

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