Severe storms expected Thursday; large hail possible

Published: Apr. 19, 2023 at 5:27 PM CDT
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Thursday’s Severe Storm Risk: Tomorrow’s storm risk comes as a cold front approaches our area during the afternoon hours. Tomorrow’s front won’t actually move through until Friday, but the majority of the energy with this system impacts us Thursday. We’ll start out with morning clouds and temperatures in the upper 60s but as a cold front gets closer, we warm around 80, and the dry-line closes in from the west storms will start to pop up after 2 PM. Widely scattered to numerous thunderstorms bubble up mid-afternoon and will rake across the area through sunset. The strongest storms will contain gusty winds near 65 MPH, up to golf-ball size hail, and potentially even a stray tornado. In addition to the severe weather risk, the moisture rich atmosphere will lead to extremely efficient rainfall producing storms. Storms may contain rainfall rates exceeding an inch an hour. On a very isolated basis, tomorrow’s storms could potentially drop 2″ to 4″. Rainfall totals will likely range between a half-inch and one-inch on average, but there will be spots that receive less rain too. Storms are possible until about 11pm before they exit off to the east.

Friday’s Cold Front: The cold front won’t clear the area until Friday. Thursday’s storms should zap most of the moisture and energy out of the atmosphere so rain chances dip and are primarily confined to the pre-dawn morning hours. Friday’s front pushes the humid air and clouds out of our area for Saturday.

Weekend Forecast: Sunshine and north winds will combine to drop morning lows into the mid-40s Saturday with highs reaching the low 70s. Forecast model data is suggesting that another storm system will move through the state Sunday. Unlike Thursday’s storm system, Sunday’s storm system will likely just be a good rainfall maker. Rain chances Sunday have climbed to 40% and could go higher as confidence in rain goes up. With clouds and the threat of rain, highs will settle in the mid-60s.

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