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Central US to face more bouts of severe weather this week

By Kristina Pydynowski, AccuWeather senior meteorologist 
April 18, 2017, 7:25:23 AM EDT


After violent thunderstorms closed out Easter in the southern Plains, parts of the central United States will face additional rounds of severe weather this week.

Residents in the affected areas will have to monitor AccuWeather MinuteCast® and weather radios and be ready to seek shelter.

A few severe thunderstorms produced damaging winds near Rapid City, South Dakota, on Monday evening but weakened quickly as they moved eastward.

More storms are likely to erupt over the middle part of the Mississippi Valley on Tuesday.

“There will be enough ingredients present for strong, gusty thunderstorms to develop by Tuesday evening across western Iowa and move eastward into western Illinois by the overnight hours,” AccuWeather Storm Warning Meteorologist Richard Schraeger said.

Tuesday's threat zone will include Omaha, Nebraska.

Gusty Storms Tuesday 

Strong winds, hail and blinding downpours will be the main hazards.

"On Tuesday night, another area of strong-to-severe thunderstorms will erupt across Nebraska and push eastward to potentially strike the same areas in Iowa affected by Tuesday evening's storms," AccuWeather Meteorologist Kyle Elliott said.

There is a good possibility that the storms that fire up Tuesday night exceed the intensity of those that erupt during the daylight hours.

Again, damaging winds and hail will be the primary threats Tuesday night, but areas hit multiple times by drenching thunderstorms stand at risk for localized flooding, Elliott added.

Cities such as Omaha, Lincoln, and Valentine, Nebraska; as well as Des Moines, Iowa; will be within Tuesday night's threat area.

The violent thunderstorms should weaken prior to reaching Chicago and Detroit on Wednesday afternoon and evening.

The next storm to emerge into the Plains will quickly follow at midweek, putting the central Plains at risk for severe weather.

The zone from central Kansas to southeastern Nebraska and northwestern Missouri will be at risk. This includes Wichita, Kansas, and Kansas City.

If the storm’s path is farther to the north or south of what is currently expected, the severe weather danger would also shift in that direction.

“The primary weather concerns with Wednesday’s storms will be damaging winds, large hail and a few tornadoes,” Schraeger said.

“Local flash flooding will also be a concern across these areas,” he said. “That is especially true in central Kansas, near the Flint Hills along I-35, where controlled fires have been ongoing early this spring.”

North of Wednesday's strongest thunderstorms, soaking rain will spread across the rest of the central Plains.

Locally strong thunderstorms may shift eastward into the Ohio Valley and interior mid-Atlantic on Thursday.

Meanwhile, the next round of severe weather will likely begin to take shape Thursday night and Friday over the southern Plains and continue farther to the east over the weekend.

There is the potential for a significant outbreak of severe weather that includes tornadoes over the South Central states from late this week through this weekend.