The greatest threat for flooding downpours and locally severe thunderstorms into the nighttime hours on the Fourth of July will focus on the south-central United States.
Thunderstorms threaten to interfere with outdoor plans and provide nature's fireworks across the South, southern mid-Atlantic and the Midwest. A few evening thunderstorms will also briefly cut into the heat over the Front Range of the Rockies.
Areas from northern Texas and southern and western Oklahoma to Arkansas, northern Louisiana, northwestern Mississippi, western Tennessee and southeastern Missouri will be at risk for locally severe storms. This includes in Dallas, Amarillo and Lubbock, Texas; Shreveport and Monroe, Louisiana; Little Rock and Texarkana, Arkansas; Jackson and Tupelo, Mississippi; Cape Girardeau, Missouri, and Memphis, Tennessee.
Worse than disrupting outdoor holiday plans, areas of flash flooding and thunderstorm damage may result.
The strongest thunderstorms will be capable of producing damaging winds, hail, flooding downpours and frequent lightning. An isolated tornado cannot be ruled out.
Even if flooding or severe weather does not ensue, remember to seek shelter as soon as thunder is heard.
Downpours will also create hazards for motorists by reducing visibility and raising the danger of vehicles hydroplaning when traveling at highway speeds on stretches of interstates 20, 30, 35 and 40.
Where the weather forces fireworks displays to be delayed, thunderstorms may not be quick to leave the region on Wednesday. Drier air should filter in on Thursday as the rain and thunderstorms shift over more of the Ohio Valley and into the Northeast.
However, more thunderstorms are likely to quickly return to the weekend.