Once again, the main story across the country is the widespread severe weather and significant flooding plaguing the Central US. Blinding downpours, large hail, dangerous tornadoes, and damaging winds will all continue to wreak havoc across the region, with severe threats possibly continuing into this weekend. Along the coasts, we can expect mostly dry weather, with the exception of the Northeast, where showers and isolated thunderstorms will accompany below-average temperatures.

Welcome to the Wednesday edition of your Morning Briefing, where we’ll give you a quick rundown on everything you need to know weather-wise, every weekday morning. Let’s begin.

Widespread Severe Weather Risk Continues:

  1. Last night’s powerful storms will be resurrected today, leading to another day of widespread severe weather. And tomorrow, more severe weather continues, with even more risk possible this weekend.
  2. The remnants from last night’s destructive squall line will remain somewhat in tact this morning, before regaining strength with daytime heating. This afternoon, storms will yet again likely have a linear structure and will bring the severe risk further east towards the Lower Mississippi Valley.
  3. Any discrete cells that develop slightly to the west over eastern TX and northern LA will have a high chance for very large hail, high winds, and possibly one or two tornadoes. The strongest storms will likely be in the mid-late afternoon, and likely last into the evening. A passing frontal boundary to the north will also introduce some severe risk over the mid-Missouri and Mississippi Valleys this afternoon as well.
  4. Thursday, continued convective potential will combine with an incoming cold front to make for another day of severe threats. Storms will likely not be widespread, and be significantly weaker than Tuesday’s storms.
  5. A split-stream pattern aloft could mean continued risk through the weekend, but the next two days of storms will have a high enough impact on the region that it’s still too early to tell for sure.

Flash Flooding Risk Accompanies Historic Mississippi River Flooding:

  1. Its seems that April Showers have crept into May this year as more days of heavy rainfall lie ahead of us for the Central US. By Thursday, up to 6″ is expected to have fallen over the region, with an additional few inches into the weekend. This will cause a high risk for flash flooding, and work to exacerbate any pre-existing road and river flooding as well.
  2. In the last week, over 10″ of rain has fallen over the Southern and Central Plains, priming rivers and soil to be especially prone to flooding. Saturated soils and rivers already at or above flood stage will mean that any amount of rain falling on the ground will quickly work to flood the area.
  3. Increased risk of flooding is expected to last through Thursday for many areas. More rain is expected this weekend, but the exact placement and duration is not highly certain. It is important to continue to check and heed local watches and warnings. It only take 6″ of water to sweep away and disable most small cars, so if you come across any flooding on roads, “turn around, don’t drown!”

More Rain to Come for Northeast:

  1. Showers will move out of the region this morning, to make way for a brief break from rain for most of the day today. Then, more storms will move in Thursday to start off the rainy weekend ahead.
  2. Similar to last week, our upper-air pattern directs flow right from the Central US into the Northeast. Whereas the rest of the coast will remain relatively warm and dry, the Northeast can expect several rounds of rain to accompany slightly below-average temperatures.
  3. Through Friday, up to 2″ of rain will have fallen, with the highest totals through Upstate NY and parts of New England. After Sunday, a warmer, and mostly drier pattern should begin to build for the region.

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Kathleen is a Meteorologist at WeatherOptics, where she works writing content for the website, providing accurate and detailed forecasts to clients, and consulting on various meteorological projects. Kathleen earned her B.S. in Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences in 2018 from Stony Brook University. Kathleen has also done research into our changing climate by investigating theRole of Atmospheric Rivers on Arctic Amplification in 2017.

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