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NWS issues storm warnings through Friday

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The National Weather Service (NWS) has issued warnings of potentially severe weather in eastern New Mexico and Chaves County until Friday.

The most significant threats of damaging winds, including a possible tornado, as well as thunderstorms and hail, were expected to be over for the eastern part of the state by Monday, according to the National Weather Service website.

But periodic thunderstorms and the potential for localized flooding could occur in the county until Friday.

On Saturday afternoon, the Weather Service issued a warning indicating that winds with gusts of up to 60 miles an hour and a thunderstorm that could bring golf ball-sized hail was expected to hit the Dunken area in the southwest portion of the county by about 3:20 p.m. A Chaves County Sheriff’s Office dispatcher said that no damage calls had been received by about 4:15 p.m., when the storm was anticipated to be over.

Gusty winds, rain and hail the size of ping pong balls could also occur in the Hope area of the county until about 5 p.m. Saturday night, the Weather Service said.

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The agency is recommending that people and animals move inside, away from windows, during the storms and that precautions be taken during this coming week to protect vehicles and structures. It also is advising that roads are likely to be slick during and after thunderstorms.