Map: A tornado watch has been issued for parts of Massachusetts

Officials say those in the watch area should be prepared for threatening weather.

Fenway Park
Storm clouds form over Fenway Park last July. –Maddie Meyer / Getty Images

Even amid summertime temperatures, New England can’t escape the possibility of extreme weather.

With severe thunderstorms expected to hit the region Tuesday afternoon, the National Weather Service issued a tornado watch for large swathes of Massachusetts, as well as parts of Connecticut, Vermont, and New York.

The watch is in effect until 9 p.m. and covers Western and Central Massachusetts — stretching as far east as Worcester — including Worcester, Hampshire, Franklin, and Hampden counties.

According to the service’s website, tornado watches mean that “conditions are favorable for the development of tornadoes in and close to the watch area,” but not that tornadoes are necessarily imminent. That said, the service warned that hail as large as limes and wind gusts up to 75 mph are possible.

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Officials say that during the watch, people should review tornado safety rules and be prepared to move to a place of safety if threatening weather approaches.

Boston and most of Eastern Massachusetts remains under a severe thunderstorm watch. Read more from Dave Epstein on what to expect here.