After a tranquil start to the weekend, heavy thunderstorms will renew the threat for travel disruptions, flooding and damage across the midwestern United States late Sunday.
The renewed threat of torrential downpours and gusty thunderstorms will put the cities of Minneapolis; Cedar Rapids, Iowa; Madison, Wisconsin; and Rockford, Illinois, at risk of slower travel on the roads and delays in the air.
Even worse, flooding, power outages and tree and structural damage can occur in these cities and surrounding communities.
Thunderstorms will congregate and gain strength along the dividing line between steamy air to the south and dry, cool air to the north.
The storms will move in a northwest to southeast manner along the dividing line from central Minnesota to north-central Illinois.
“We are watching the potential for a well-organized complex of storms to develop on Sunday evening from southern Minnesota, down into eastern Iowa, western Wisconsin and possibly northern Illinois,” AccuWeather Storm Warning Meteorologist Kayla St. Germain said.
Along with frequent lightning strikes, damaging winds and localized flash flooding will be the primary threats in the aforementioned areas, according to St. Germain.
There is the possibility that the thunderstorms could dive farther south and east than currently anticipated. This would put portions of central Illinois and western Indiana in the path of the flood and severe risk.
Chicago may be missed by the worst of the thunderstorms to the south and west, but rumbles of thunder and sudden downpours can occur late Sunday night.
A majority of the intense thunderstorms will occur at night, which will endanger those who are sleeping. Investing in a weather radio or keeping a cell phone on with the volume turned up and severe alerts enabled will help keep you aware of severe weather after dark.
The threat for severe weather in the region will not end with the new week.
“The threat for powerful and damaging thunderstorms on Sunday night will only be the start of an active pattern next week in the Midwest,” AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Michael Doll said.
Exactly where thunderstorms blossom late Monday afternoon and Monday night will be determined by the movement of Sunday night’s cluster of storms.
Latest indications point toward portions of Iowa, Illinois, Indiana and perhaps Ohio being in the line of fire of severe weather Monday.
The pattern of one or more cluster of storms developing late in the day and overnight will likely repeat itself each day next week from the Midwest to the Ohio Valley, according to Doll.