A severe thunderstorm watch that was issued for much of Massachusetts earlier Monday afternoon has been canceled, the National Weather Service tweeted at 5:40 p.m., though some gusty winds and heavy downpours remain possible with scattered thunderstorms.
“Drier air high in the atmosphere has not allowed storms to strengthen to severe levels,” officials wrote.
[540 PM UPDATE] The Severe Thunderstorm Watch has been CANCELLED for southern New England. Drier air high in the atmosphere has not allowed storms to strengthen to severe levels, though some gusty winds and heavy downpours remain possible with scattered t-storms. https://t.co/LPEi7Y6xGE— NWS Boston (@NWSBoston) May 20, 2019
However, a severe thunderstorm warning was issued for parts of Rhode Island and southern Massachusetts, including Attleboro, Rehoboth, Easton, Raynham, and Taunton, through 6:15 p.m.
“At 5:47 PM EDT, a severe thunderstorm was located over North Providence, moving east at 45 mph,” officials wrote. “Expect damage to trees and power lines. . . For your protection move to an interior room on the lowest floor of a building.”
The thunderstorm watch had earlier been issued for Middlesex, Worcester, Franklin, Hampshire, and Hampden counties until 9 p.m., with a slight chance of a tornado.
During a thunderstorm watch, residents should have a way to receive weather warnings, check for forecast updates, and have a shelter planned, the weather service said.
Shortly after 4 p.m., the forecasters warned of a thunderstorm over Plainville or North Attleborough moving east at 40 miles per hour, with winds over 40 miles per hour. It was headed toward communities south of Boston including Brockton, Quincy, Taunton, Weymouth, and Braintree. The storm featured frequent lightning and could cause minor damage.
“The highest risk will be across interior Massachusetts and northern Connecticut,” the weather service reported earlier Monday. In addition to damaging winds and large hail, “There also is a low probability for a tornado,” forecasters wrote.
The storms were likely to bring heavy rainfall and could result in localized flooding, threatening especially the area northwest of the Providence-to-Boston corridor. Depending on the timing, those floods could come quickly and disrupt the evening rush hour, forecasters said.
The weather service earlier predicted temperatures in Boston would climb into the 80s and that it would be a humid day even in areas that don’t see much in the way of storms.