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South-central US to face severe storms Sunday evening, Monday

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The lull in severe weather across the south-central United States will come to an end as the weekend transitions to the new week.

Most places from Oklahoma and eastern Texas to the lower Mississippi River have not had to deal with violent thunderstorms so far this month.

That streak will end as a storm system emerging from the Rockies and colder air plunging down from the north clashes with the warmth surging back into the south-central U.S.

While an isolated severe thunderstorm will erupt late Sunday afternoon, a more widespread threat will develop in the evening from northern Oklahoma to southwestern Missouri.

Tulsa, Oklahoma; Wichita, Kansas; and Springfield, Missouri, are among the communities at risk.

The strongest thunderstorms will be capable of producing damaging winds and hail. The danger will transition to flash flooding overnight.

As the drenching rain spreads over the Ohio Valley on Monday, more severe thunderstorms will unfold across eastern Oklahoma, northeastern Texas, northern Louisiana and Arkansas.

The danger will arise in the afternoon and early evening, according to AccuWeather Assistant Director of Storm Warning Services Andrew Gagnon.

Damaging winds, hail and downpours will once again be produced by the severe thunderstorms.

"In the late afternoon and evening, there could be a few tornadoes with the best chance from Little Rock to Shreveport to northeastern Texas and far southeastern Oklahoma," Gagnon said.

"As the night goes on, the severe thunderstorms will congeal into a squall line with high winds the main threat as it moves east toward the Mississippi River."

This line of thunderstorms with damaging winds, as well as downpours, will roll into Mississippi and Alabama overnight Monday.

The downpours from Monday into Monday night will raise the risk of flash flooding and pose hazards to motorists by reducing visibility and heightening the risk of vehicles hydroplaning at highway speeds.

"To me, the best chance for flooding will be around Arkansas to northern Mississippi and western Tennessee," Gagnon said. "Those areas have been hit pretty hard this spring, and I could see them getting a couple of rounds [of heavy rain]. There will probably some local spots that get four inches [of rain]."

Gagnon feels that the flood threat to the south will be more localized with most places seeing a thunderstorm or two and not rounds of heavy rain.

The thunderstorms will shift out of the south-central states and focus on the Southeast on Tuesday. Downpours will remain a hazard, but the risk of damaging winds and hail will become more localized than on Monday.