All Weather News

Record Warmth East – Record Snows Upper Midwest – River Flood Risk Grows

10 Apr 2013, 1:51 pm

It’s one mixed-up weather map: instant July for much of the eastern seaboard, with record-setting 80s, even a slight shot at 90F in Washington D.C. later today. Check out the Cherry Blossom Cam in DC from 

Temperatures are 80 degrees colder in Colorado and the western High Plains, setting the stage for a major snow storm over the Upper Midwest and Great Lakes, with enough rain to accelerate stream and river flooding from Iowa and Wisconsin into Missouri and Lower Michigan.

Looks much more like winter in the Central U.S.   Check out the view in Rapid City, SD.



Or the ice in Sioux Falls, SD.  Amanda shared the photos below on the WeatherNation Website.




Ice in Oklahoma too.   If you look closely, you can see these blossoms are coated in it.Folks from Texas to Iowa also saw hail.  Some had a hard time determining if it was hail or snow.  Students in Sioux City Iowa had some fun with the accumulating hail on campus. Thanks to @kelsey_wolf for the photo below.So what’s ahead? 

* Another 4-9″ slushy snow may fall on the Twin Cities tonight thru Thursday afternoon; a plowable snow event. As much as 15-18″ may fall on southwestern Minnesota.* River floodingis increasing across the Midwest and Great Lakes; heavy rain falling on partially frozen ground complicating the flood outlook.* Severe thunderstorms are likely later today from the Mississippi River Valley into the Ohio Valley, as far east as Philadelphia and metro New York City. The odds of tornadoes are low, but not zero.

Latest Warnings. Winter Storm Warnings are posted for much of the Upper Midwest for ice and another round of heavy, wet snow tonight into Thursday. All the green counties are under Flash Flood Watches or Warnings. Data courtesy of NOAA. Image above is from the WeatherNation iPhone app.  Download Here:


Most Weather Headaches. Ice Storm Warnings are posted for southeastern Minnesota and southwest Wisconsin, for a significant accumulation of glaze ice on roads and powerlines. Some power outages are possible from Rochester and LaCrosse to Menomonie, WI. Flood Warnings (bright green counties) are in effect from Wisconsin into eastern Iowa, northwest Illinois, Lower Michigan and much of Missouri.


WSI RPM. I suspect the WSI RPM model will be close to the mark,  showing some 16″+ amounts for southwestern Minnesota, but closer to 4-8″ for the Twin Cities, with 12″ for Green Bay and 15-20″ for parts of Lower Michigan Thursday into Friday morning. This will be a very wet, heavy snow, with high water content, capable of minor power outages.


Blizzard Potential Index.  This is an in-house model that one of my companies, Alerts Broadcaster, developed.  BPI or the Blizzard Potential Index factors predicted snowfall rates, wind speeds and visibilities. Models are suggesting near-blizzard criteria from Alexandria and St. Cloud into the suburbs of the Twin Cities tomorrow morning; conditions improving by afternoon. Odds are morning rush hour will be anything but.


Rainfall Amounts: Look at some of the rainfall amounts since yesterday. Check out the interactive map from NOAA for the latest.





Predicted Rainfall. The NAM model is predicting some 2″+ precipitation amounts for the Great Lakes and Mississippi Valley. Much of that moisture will fall as snow over Lower Michigan, but heavy rain on partially frozen ground may lead to run-off problems from near Chicago and Detroit into upstate New York, more flash flooding possible Memphis to New Orleans.


Current River/Stream Flooding. NOAA is reporting major flooding in Devil’s Lake, North Dakota and the East Fork of the Black River in Wisconsin. Minor to moderate stream/river flooding is reported across much of Wisconsin, southeastern Minnesota, northeast Iowa, Lower Michigan and the suburbs of Buffalo, New York.


Tuesday Storm Reports. Although no tornadoes were reported, 2″+ hail reports were received from north Texas into western Iowa yesterday. Today the threat shifts 200-500 miles farther east into the Mississippi and Ohio River Valleys. Detailed storm reports from SPC are here.

Tornado Watch issued. The first tornado watches of the day have been issued. Big cities included are St. Louis and Little Rock. The watches are in effect until 9 PM CDT.  Get the latest details from the SPC.

Severe Risk Shifts East. Tomorrow the severe risk extends from the Ohio Valley southward to Huntsville and Atlanta. By Friday a few storms may exceed severe criteria over the Carolinas and Tidewater region of Virginia. I could see a few very strong T-storms Friday from D.C. to New York City.

Summary: Another surge of heavy wet snow and ice pushes across the Upper Midwest into the Great Lakes tonight into Friday morning. River flooding continues to increase over the Midwest, and will be a factor for the next couple of weeks as we continue in a very wet, unsettled pattern. Severe storms will fire up later today over the central USA, pushing to the east coast by Friday. We’ll continue to monitor this unusually intense April storm and keep you in the loop.

Paul Douglas, Senior Meteorologist

Alerts Broadcaster, Minneapolis


Alerts Broadcaster provides severe weather and natural hazard intelligence to businesses worldwide through Alerts, Briefings, and Business Continuity Consultation.  Alerts Broadcaster meteorologists are working 24×7 to provide analysis and perspective that is crucial to your company’s severe weather response.

Contact us to learn how Alerts Broadcaster can help protect your organization, staff and patrons:

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *