National Weather Service: Tornado watch in effect until 4 p.m. Thursday is your source for free local news and information in Virginia Beach

WAKEFIELD – A tornado warning has been downgraded to a tornado watch, according to the National Weather Service. The watch is in effect in the region until 4 p.m.

12:30 p.m. update:

A tornado watch was upgraded to a warning around 12:35 p.m. on Thursday.

The warning is in effect for Hampton Roads, including Virginia Beach, until 1 p.m.

The watch will continue to be in effect until 4 p.m.

9:30 a.m. update:

The National Weather Service has issued a tornado watch for the Hampton Roads region on Thursday morning.

The watch, meteorologist Scott Minnick said, would last until about 1 p.m., noting that the storm has moved into the region later than initially forecast. The storm front has the capability to produce 60-70 mph winds, with southwestern wind gusts of up to 40 mph lingering after Thursday morning’s storm moves out of the region.

“Our main concern right now is damaging winds and large hail,” Minnick said. “The greatest tornado risk has shifted to the north of the region.”

Previously predicted rainfall totals have fallen to anywhere from a quarter of an inch to half an inch on Thursday, Minnick said, which decreases the likelihood of widespread flash floods.