Update, 9:08 p.m.:The tornado watch for the Omaha area was canceled. The watch remained in effect for Cass County in Nebraska and southwestern Iowa.
The National Weather Service has placed eastern Nebraska and western Iowa under a tornado watch until 10 p.m. today.
The areas in yellow on this map are the areas under the watch.
A watch means that conditions are such that a tornado could develop. A warning is more severe and means that some sort of rotation or an actual tornado has been spotted and people should take shelter immediately.
Within the broad expanse of area covered by tonight's tornado watch – eastern Nebraska and western Iowa – the area most likely to see severe weather is from Bellevue-Omaha-Fremont-Norfolk, said Erik Pindrock, meteorologist with AccuWeather Inc., The World-Herald's private weather consultant.
At 6 p.m., he said the risk wasn't imminent. The most likely time of severe weather is from 8 p.m. to 2 a.m.
"Through at least 7 p.m., we should be OK," Pindrock said. "Once you get to about 8 p.m., anyone with outdoor plans needs to be paying attention."
If the National Weather Service issues a severe thunderstorm warning or a tornado warning, move immediately to shelter, he said.
A car is not the best shelter, so if you're out and about think about where you would physically take shelter if a storm blows up.
Rick Chermok, meteorologist with the National Weather Service, said severe weather is likely through the weekend, but the atmosphere is so unstable that it's difficult to time when the next round will occur. This evening's storms will reset conditions and affect how Saturday's weather plays out.
Some areas could see significant rainfall because several days of successive storms could sweep through. Intermittent storms are possible Saturday and Sunday and again midweek.
Nebraska counties under the watch: Antelope, Boone, Burt, Butler, Cass, Cedar, Colfax, Cuming, Dakota, Dixon, Dodge, Douglas, Hamilton, Knox, Lancaster, Madison, Merrick, Nance, Otoe, Pierce, Platte, Polk, Sarpy, Saunders, Seward, Stanton, Thurston, Washington, Wayne and York.
Iowa counties under the watch: Fremont, Harrison, Mills, Monona, Montgomery, Page and Pottawattamie.