Weekend of Severe Weather Likely
Severe thunderstorms are likely to flare this weekend from the Upper Midwest to the Southern Plains; bringing the possibility of strong winds, large hail and even a few tornadoes. And to make matters worse, heavy rain could cause significant flooding for areas of Minnesota and Iowa.
Below, is a complete breakdown of what to expect this weekend.
A strong upper-level pacific jet will pull out of the Intermountain West, into the Upper Midwest, Saturday. And with storms likely to be ongoing early Saturday, the strong jet stream pattern — coupled with an associated cold front — will interact with abundant, deep moisture to aid in the reintensification of storms by early afternoon.
(INTERACTIVE RADAR: Zoom to Your Street)
From the Twin Cities area to southwest Oklahoma, the main mode of severe weather will be large hail, gusty winds, brief torrential downpours and frequent lightning. That said, a few isolated tornadoes are possible with more intense storms but, overall, the tornado threat remains relatively marginal.
Much like Saturday, severe storms are expected to fire by early afternoon. However, unlike Saturday, the threat for tornadic activity goes up in the Upper Midwest. As the strong jet stream noses through the Upper Midwest and small — but potent — upper-level troughs move across the area, storms will rapidly initiate in the afternoon.
The primary threat area will be eastern Nebraska, Iowa, southern Minnesota and western Wisconsin. In addition to the threat for tornadoes: Large hail, damaging winds and torrential rain is possible.
Given parts of the Upper Midwest have already dealt with flash flooding this week, additional rainfall will likely lead to more rivers and streams topping their banks. Forecast models continue to indicate a wide swath of 3-6″ of rain is possible in Iowa and Minnesota.
(MORE ON WEATHERNATIONTV.COM: More Rain on the Way to Flood-Stricken Minnesota)
If you do come upon a washed out road, don’t drive through the water. Two feet of swift-moving water is strong enough to float a small SUV downstream.
Meteorologist Alan Raymond