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Charles County is under a tornado watch until 10 this evening, and officials are urging residents to stay abreast of weather developments.

The three Southern Maryland counties were included with 21 Maryland counties and Baltimore in the area of the watch designation from the National Weather Service, which was issued at 2 p.m.

During a phone interview Monday afternoon, Charles County government spokeswoman Crystal Hunt said the county currently has “no notification” of any emergency shelters needing to open.

“We just want to urge citizens to be alert and gather any items, and to tune in to national and local news in case it escalates,” Hunt said. “The conditions are there, and we want citizens to be aware of what’s going on.”

Ken Robinson, county commissioner and avid weather tracker, mirrored Hunt’s sentiments, noting that the conditions for a tornado are “favorable.”

“It doesn’t mean one will occur, but the citizens need to monitor media reports,” Robinson (D) said. “I would strongly suggest people do that, especially given the weather today.”

Robinson said tornadoes often appear very quickly and with little warning, and are the byproduct of severe thunderstorms.

Charles County Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman Diane Richardson said that the office is not taking any action at this time, but is monitoring all developments. In the event of a confirmed tornado, Richardson said, the office will work with the Department of Emergency Services at the command center.

Further information on the warning can be found here.

lrenner@somdnews.com