UPDATED 7:07 p.m.: A tornado warning has now been issued for parts of Lorain County. The warning remains in effect for Elyria and Lorain until 7:45 p.m.
UPDATED 7:05 p.m.: The tornado warning has expired, but a flood advisory remains in effect east-central Erie County and northwest Lorain County. Thunderstorms with heavy rain are impacting Vermilion and other parts of Erie and Lorain counties. Urban and low-lying flooding in likely.
UPDATED 6:56 p.m.: The Erie County Sheriff's Office said a deputy saw a funnel cloud starting in the Vermilion Township area, which prompted them to activate the sirens. That portion of the storm has moved east into Lorain County.
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National Weather Service issued a tornado warning for east-central Erie County and northern Lorain County at 6:40 p.m. Monday. The warning is in effect until 7 p.m.
Flash flood warnings are also in effect for the area.
The warning applies to the cities of Lorain and Elyria as well. Doppler radar indicated a severe thunderstorm capable of producing a tornado near Vermilion, or about 9 miles west of Lorain.
Per the National Weather Service: "This tornado ws nearly stationary. The tornado will otherwise remain over mainly rural areas of the indicated counties."
Precautionary actions: THE SAFEST PLACE TO BE DURING A TORNADO IS IN A BASEMENT. GET UNDER A WORKBENCH OR OTHER PIECE OF STURDY FURNITURE. IF NO BASEMENT IS AVAILABLE ... SEEK SHELTER ON THE LOWEST FLOOR OF THE BUILDING IN AN INTERIOR HALLWAY OR ROOM SUCH AS A CLOSET. USE BLANKETS OR PILLOWS TO COVER YOUR BODY AND ALWAYS STAY AWAY FROM WINDOWS. IF IN MOBILE HOMES OR VEHICLES ... EVACUATE THEM AND GET INSIDE A SUBSTANTIAL SHELTER. IF NO SHELTER IS AVAILABLE ... LIE FLAT IN THE NEAREST DITCH OR OTHER LOW SPOT AND COVER YOUR HEAD WITH YOUR HANDS.