Fox News Weather Center

Heavy storms to raise flood risk in central US into Sunday

Heavy thunderstorms will congregate over the central Plains and threaten to flood a portion of the region into the weekend.

The thunderstorms have the potential to unleash a large amount of rainfall in a short amount of time. Flash, urban and small stream flooding will threaten some communities.

This will be the first significant rainfall in several weeks for most locations across the central Plains.

The heavy rain and thunderstorms will ride along the wave of building muggy conditions to the south and dry, September-like air to the north and east.

As winds pump a large amount of moisture into the lower part of the atmosphere, a heavy rain threat will set up over the Plains beginning on Friday night and continuing through Saturday, according to AccuWeather Meteorologist Ryan Adamson.

“While the exact area of heavy rain in not etched in stone, it appears eastern Kansas into northern and central Missouri are at the greatest risk for flooding,” he added.

Plains flood threat 8.4 AM

Topeka, Kansas, and Kansas City and Columbia, Missouri, are included in this greatest risk for enhanced rainfall.

Even if flooding does not ensue in these communities, disruptions to travel and outdoor plans are likely.

“By Saturday night, the heavy rain and flooding risk may reach as far east as St. Louis,” Adamson said.

Rainfall could reach or exceed 4 inches in the core of heavy thunderstorms.

“This could cause renewed rises on area rivers and streams in the Kansas City area where severe flooding occurred just over a week ago,” Adamson said.

Stretches of interstates 35 and 70 could become treacherous for driving in the height of the downpours as visibility will be reduced to near zero. Secondary roads may be flooded.

Away from the core of heavy rainfall, severe thunderstorms could light up the High Plains of southeastern Wyoming, western Nebraska and eastern Colorado on Friday afternoon and evening before expanding into the Black Hills of South Dakota on Saturday.

Large hail, downpours and strong winds will be the main dangers that threaten this corridor.

By late in the weekend and early next week, the zone of soaking thunderstorms will sink south and east as drier air pushes into the central Plains.