Severe weather outbreak to eye central US
May 16, 2017
There will be a heightened risk of dangerous storms across the central and southern Plains late Tuesday into Wednesday.
Residents and travelers from Minnesota to Texas will need to monitor the forecast and keep flashlights and weather radios handy over the next several days. Most days this week will feature severe weather somewhere over the Central states.
"There will not be much of a trigger for widespread severe thunderstorms to form until Tuesday," AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Frank Strait said. "This is when a substantial storm system will be coming out of the Rockies."
Thunderstorms will blossom late Tuesday afternoon from southwestern Iowa though southeastern Nebraska, west-central Kansas and into the Texas Panhandle.
The severe thunderstorms will then spread eastward through the evening and overnight hours into eastern Kansas, central Oklahoma and south-central Texas.
"The environment will be favorable for supercells (discrete thunderstorms), and thus tornadoes," Strait said.
"A few tornadoes may be capable of long tracks and extreme intensity," AccuWeather Storm Warning Meteorologist Joseph Bauer said.
The most widespread impacts from the thunderstorms will be damaging wind gusts, large hail and flash flooding.
"Disruptions to logistical operations are expected, with downed trees and power lines, road closures and structural damage to businesses and homes all possible," Bauer said.
These damaging impacts could threaten the cities and surrounding communities of Des Moines, Iowa; Omaha and Grand Island, Neb.; Topeka and Wichita, Kan.; Kansas City, Mo.; Oklahoma City; and Abilene, Texas.
Heavy and gusty thunderstorms will also erupt farther north to parts of Minnesota on Tuesday.
The severe weather through midweek will be the start of another active weather pattern across the Central states as more flooding and severe thunderstorms target the region spanning Thursday to Sunday.