Severe weather set to return

Staff Writer
Woodford Times reports severe weather will be widespread on Wednesday across the nation's heartland. The threat for severe weather will extend from the western Great Lakes southwestward to southwestern Texas.

With these severe thunderstorms comes a threat for tornadoes, especially from north-central Kansas southward to northern Texas. While Wednesday's severe weather will be nothing in comparison to the twisters we saw on April 27, all it takes is one tornado to move through a populated area to have a major impact on life and property.

Cities in the greatest risk for tornadoes on Wednesday include Wichita, Oklahoma City, and Dallas. In addition to tornadoes, destructive hail to the size of softballs, and damaging straight-line winds in excess of 65 mph will be possible.

The severe weather will shift eastward on Thursday and will affect areas from Wisconsin southward to eastern Texas. On Thursday, the main threat will be large hail to the size of softballs and damaging straight-line winds in excess of 65 mph. There may be a threat for some isolated, weak tornadoes across central and northern Illinois on Thursday, including the cities of Chicago and Milwaukee.

On Friday, the threat of severe weather will again push eastward across much of the Ohio and Tennessee valleys. The main threats on Friday will be large hail to the size of baseballs, and damaging straight-line winds in excess of 65 mph. An isolated tornado cannot be ruled out. Cities that will be affected by Friday's severe weather include Cleveland, Columbus, Lexington and Nashville.

Rain will fall on some areas experiencing the worst Mississippi River flooding in recorded history. However, outside of some minor urban flash flooding, the amount of rain will not be enough to have a significant impact on Old Man River and its tributaries.

Very warm, moist air is surging northward from the Gulf of Mexico ahead of a low pressure area near the Four Corners region, setting the stage for multiple days of severe weather.

This low will finally eject eastward into the southern Plains on Wednesday. Supercell thunderstorms will initiate Wednesday afternoon near and just south of the low pressure area in north-central Kansas and in the evening farther south along the leading edge of a sweep of dry air across western Oklahoma and northern Texas.

Winds will be out of the south or southeast at the surface and out of the southwest 18,000 feet above the surface. This means we will have winds sufficiently turning with height, an important component in the formation of tornadoes.