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Watch out for severe storms bringing high winds, rain, and eerie shelf clouds

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A hazardous weather outlook is in effect

A severe thunderstorm watch was issued for counties surrounding Chicago for a storm moving at 50 to 60 mph toward the city. The metro area had a hazardous weather outlook in effect until tonight which indicates a risk of flooding, hail, thunderstorms, and dangerous winds.

The watch for the collection of complex storms with heavy rain and lightning was issued early Tuesday as the National Weather Service Chicago tracks the movement. Residents in Chicago should look out for rain before 2 p.m. with totals between a quarter and half inch possible.

The main concern is the fast, dangerous wind from the weather event which is south of Chicago, around the Kankakee to Renasselaer line. Although, residents should look out for gusts up to 50 mph anywhere south of I-88.

The weather has created several eerie shelf clouds downstate, too. The clouds look like slow-moving tsunamis or snow plows and can sometimes be a couple hundred feet above ground.

The scary clouds are often falsely reported as tornados or funnel clouds, according to NOAA. But there’s nothing to worry about with this cloud type, they are commonly formed during thunderstorm gusts, sometimes cold fronts, too.