A powerful storm system will move across the central U.S. on Monday into Tuesday, bringing the risk for severe thunderstorms from the southern Plains to the lower Mississippi Valley.
According to AccuWeather Meteorologist Becky Elliott, "A strong storm system will swing across the Plains early this week and will provide the right ingredients for severe thunderstorms to fire from Texas to Kansas on Monday."
The storm system responsible for the severe weather will spread snow across the Western states into Monday.
Portions of Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas, Missouri, Mississippi and Tennessee are at risk for severe thunderstorms on Monday into Tuesday.
Anyone driving through these states early this week should be prepared for rapidly changing weather conditions.
Thunderstorms will begin to fire ahead of the surface cold front from southwestern Kansas to western Texas on Monday afternoon.
"When these storms initially develop, there will be a brief window for a few tornadoes to form," Elliott said. "However, storms will quickly merge into a squall line, with damaging winds being the main threat."
There may be enough spin in the atmosphere for some storms embedded in the squall line to produce a brief tornado.
Gusts in the strongest storms can cause property damage, knock over trees and snap power poles.
Locations at risk for severe thunderstorms on Monday afternoon include Dodge City and Liberal, Kansas; Guymon and Woodward, Oklahoma; and Amarillo, Lubbock and Midland, Texas.
This line of storms will track eastward on Monday night from southeastern Kansas through central Texas. Storms will roll through Wichita, Kansas; Tulsa and Oklahoma City, Oklahoma; and Abilene, Dallas, Austin and San Antonio, Texas.
Those traveling on Interstate 35 from Wichita, Kansas, to San Antonio should be prepared for blinding downpours and strong winds on Monday night.
By Tuesday, the line of storms will pass through the eastern portions of Texas and Oklahoma, southern Missouri, Arkansas, western Tennessee, northern and western Louisiana and western Mississippi.
Cities at risk on Tuesday include Hugo, Oklahoma; College Station and Houston, Texas; Springfield, Missouri; Little Rock and Fayetteville, Arkansas; Memphis; Clarksdale and Greenville, Mississippi; and Shreveport and Alexandria, Louisiana.
Outside of any severe thunderstorm, very heavy rain will fall in a short period of time and lead to flash flooding.
Up to 6 inches of rain could fall in some locations.
Never drive through a flooded roadway. Only a small amount of water can wash vehicles off the road.
While the drought has nearly ended across Texas, the soil remains full of water. Only a brief heavy downpour could lead to flooding.
This rain will help ease the drought across Oklahoma and Arkansas as more than 50 percent of the area is at least abnormally dry, according to the U.S. Drought Monitor.
Use AccuWeather Minutecast® to track the severe thunderstorms across your area. Mobile users can use their GPS location.
The threat for severe weather will lower as the line of storms moves into the Gulf Coast states and Ohio Valley on Wednesday. Storms could still contain gusty winds and heavy downpours.
Severe thunderstorms will not be the only weather feature that will occur from this powerful storm system.
Soaking rain will drench areas farther north across the central Plains and east from the Southeast to the Midwest and Northeast by the end of the week.
Snow and blizzard conditions will unfold on the cold side of the storm across portions of Colorado, Nebraska, Kansas, Oklahoma and New Mexico Monday night into Tuesday.