Storms racing out of the Rockies will put parts of the central United States at risk for severe weather on multiple occasions next week.
Residents in the affected areas will have to monitor AccuWeather MinuteCast® and weather radios and be ready to seek shelter.
After locally severe thunderstorms rumble over the central Plains on Saturday, the danger for violent thunderstorms will shift to western Texas for the afternoon of Easter Sunday.
Any severe thunderstorms on Easter Sunday will be very isolated in nature but will still pose hazards to residents and holiday festivities by unleashing damaging winds and hail. A tornado touching down cannot be ruled out.
More isolated severe weather may follow over this area on Monday afternoon, while the attention for violent thunderstorms also shifts northward to the northern High Plains.
The storm returning wet weather to the West Coast on Easter Sunday will spark a few severe thunderstorms from Rapid City, South Dakota, to Scottsbluff and Sidney, Nebraska, on Monday afternoon and evening.
The strongest thunderstorms will be capable of producing damaging winds and hail.
While the severity of the thunderstorms will wane later on Monday night, the risk may once again unfold as the storm shifts eastward to the Mississippi Valley on Tuesday.
“There will be enough ingredients present for strong-to-severe thunderstorms to develop by Tuesday afternoon 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 also stretch down to Kansas City.
Damaging winds, hail and blinding downpours will be the main hazards.
“In addition, a few isolated tornadoes are possible during the mid- to late afternoon,” Schraeger said, “but as dusk approaches, the tornado threat will diminish across the area.”
The violent thunderstorms should also weaken prior to reaching Chicago and Detroit overnight and into Wednesday morning.
The next storm to emerge onto the Plains will quickly follow at midweek, putting the central Plains at risk for severe weather.
Schraeger anticipates thunderstorms to erupt across west-central Kansas by Wednesday afternoon.
“The thunderstorms will then track east along a cold front through central and eastern Kansas and may continue into the overnight hours across northern Missouri,” he said.
A line of severe thunderstorms should also ignite in west-central Oklahoma later on Wednesday, threatening motorists on Interstate 35 west of Oklahoma 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, hail may be produced in southern Nebraska.
Locally strong thunderstorms may shift with the storm to the Ohio Valley on Thursday, while a part of the central U.S. could be bracing for a potentially more significant severe weather event to follow on Friday.