Wednesday storms could be bad, and Thursday's could be worse

Written by Muleskinner Staff

(NORMAN, Okla., AP) — A forecaster has warned that the ingredients necessary to “blow up some big storms” would fall into place Wednesday and Thursday and cautioned millions of residents in the middle of the country to be aware of worsening weather.

Large hail, damaging winds and a number of tornadoes were possible Wednesday in the Southern Plains. Then the focus shifts to the mid-Mississippi River Valley, including virtually all of Illinois.
“Thursday will be the bigger day, but there’s still potential (Wednesday) for significant storms in northeastern Oklahoma, eastern Kansas and perhaps into Missouri,” said Greg Carbin, the warning coordination meteorologist for the Storm Prediction Center in Norman. “We’re not exactly sure how things will evolve in that corridor.”
Heat, humidity, instability, an approaching front and the jet stream will all contribute to steadily worsening weather.
“By Thursday, it looks like all those ingredients come together. … You can really blow up some big storms,” Carbin said.
Areas that don’t see strong storms Thursday could see heavy rain instead.
The Storm Prediction Center said Wednesday’s storms in an area from Wichita, Kansas, to Joplin, Missouri, and on either side of the Kansas-Oklahoma border, could be significant — defined as having 2-inch hail, 75-mph winds and tornadoes rated at EF2 or higher.
On Thursday, similar storms were forecast for an area from the Arkansas-Missouri border to southern Wisconsin, including Chicago and St. Louis.
The week was already off to a blustery start. Emergency officials said a tornado touched down briefly Tuesday night in southeastern Kansas, and hail and high winds caused problems from St. Louis to southwestern Indiana.