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Severe Storms to Threaten Southern Plains, Lower Mississippi Valley at Midweek


By Alex Sosnowski, AccuWeather.com Senior Meteorologist
April 21, 2015; 5:43 AM ET



A new round of thunderstorms will bring the risk of severe weather across parts of central Texas and Oklahoma to the lower Mississippi Valley from the middle to late week.

Following multiple rounds of severe weather late last week and over the weekend, the risk of heavy and locally damaging thunderstorms beginning at midweek will impact locations across southeastern Oklahoma, eastern Texas, southwestern Arkansas and western Louisiana.

A small number of storms will erupt on Tuesday night across the Oklahoma and Texas panhandles.

The storms will increase in number on Wednesday, expanding to northeastern Texas and central Oklahoma.

According to Southern Weather Expert Dan Kottlowski, "A disturbance moving southeastward across the southern Plains could bring the first round of severe storms at midweek."

"The greatest risk from the storms initially will be flash flooding, large hail and locally strong wind gusts," Kottlowski said.

Cities that could be affected by the storms on Wednesday include Houston and Dallas, Texas; and Shreveport, Louisiana. Some storms could develop as far north as part of the Oklahoma City metro area.

The storms will affect the Interstate 20 and I-35 corridors.

The risk of storms will expand over the South Central states during the latter part of the week.

"It really will not be until the latter part of the week until severe weather really ramps up and a significant outbreak occurs as the main storm system moves out from the Southwest," Kottlowski said.

Areas from the Big Bend area of Texas to portions of Arkansas and Louisiana will be at risk for severe storms and flash flooding.

"Big storms could fire up in western Texas and New Mexico to parts of western and central Nebraska in addition to areas farther east," Kottlowski said.

These areas will be close to the boundary between dry air to the west and moist air to the east.

A small number of storms during the middle and latter part of the week can produce a tornado as well.

Those traveling within, to or from the area should anticipate delays from midweek on. People spending time outdoors should be on the lookout for rapidly changing weather conditions. The storms will be most active during the afternoon and evening hours, but there can be some exceptions.

While the severe weather will carry the usual risks to lives and property, the rainfall from repeating storms will be beneficial to areas in long-term drought. Parts of western and central Oklahoma and Texas will receive multiple rounds of rain from the stormy pattern.