FRANKFORT, KY (WOWK) – Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear has declared a State of Emergency in the Bluegrass State as severe storms begin Friday, March 3.

According to Beshear’s office, the storms are expected to produce possible damaging winds, isolated tornadoes and excessive rainfall in many parts of Kentucky.

Beshear says the National Weather Service is predicting the storms will pass through Kentucky between noon and 5 p.m. ahead of a cold front. He says officials are anticipating the heaviest rainfall totals will be north of the western Kentucky and Bluegrass parkways.

The governor’s office says a tornado watch is already in effect for many parts of western Kentucky, and a flood watch is in effect for portions of central Kentucky. According to Beshear’s office, the strongest winds are expected to pass through the state in the afternoon and early evening hours. Isolated hail storms are also possible, Beshear says.

“We have been through so much and lost too many Kentuckians to severe weather; we don’t want to lose anyone else. Please make a plan and prepare for today’s expected weather events,” Beshear said. “Emergency management, communications, transportation, energy and environment staff are activated and monitoring the storms at our Emergency Operations Center. We also have the Kentucky National Guard and Kentucky State Police ready to respond.”

Beshear is urging Kentuckians not to call 911 to get traffic or weather updates. His office says Kentucky State Police ask that anyone who sees someone stranded on the roadway should contact troopers at 800-222-5555.

The Governor and Kentucky Emergency Management Director Jeremy Slinker are also warning Kentuckians to make sure they are prepared for the storms.

“It’s time to put our ‘Severe Weather Awareness Week’ plans into action,” Slinker said. “Make sure that if you have to travel, you have an emergency kit in your car, and that you have an emergency kit at home filled with food, water, first aid kits, batteries and rain gear. And always remember, if you see a road that’s flooded: Turn around and don’t drown.”