Heavy rain, gusty storms hit Central Plains as heatwave begins in Southwest


(NEW YORK) — A storm system moving through the Central Plains on Friday brought the latest round of severe weather in the U.S., including three tornadoes. Wind gusts of 65 mph were also reported in some of the thunderstorms in Arkansas and Oklahoma.

The storm is situated over Missouri Saturday morning, with flood alerts issued for parts of that state as well as Illinois. Heavy rain could cause some flooding as this storm slides eastward throughout the day.

Severe storms will likely fire up along the storm’s frontal boundary in Tennessee, western North Carolina and western South Carolina. The main threat will be damaging winds and large hail.

Then on Sunday, heavy rains will spread into parts of the mid-Atlantic and Northeast, with local downpours moving over parts of Delaware, Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Rain will move into New England during the day on Sunday.

Some snow is possible in the highest elevations of New York, Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine.

Locally, 1 to 2 inches of rain will be possible over a large part of the central and eastern U.S. this weekend from Illinois to New Jersey. Snowfall totals in the higher elevations of Vermont and New Hampshire could exceed 2 inches.

Meanwhile, out in the west, the first heatwave of the season is getting underway. There were a handful of records in southern California on Friday. Downtown Los Angeles tied its daily high-temperature record of 93 degrees. Burbank made it all the way to 99 degrees, which was a new daily high-temperature record. Long Beach tied its daily high-temperature record on Friday of 93 degrees. San Diego tied its daily record of 83, and Palm Springs tied its daily record of 103.

Records will be in danger again Saturday in parts of Southern California, especially in Burbank and Palm Springs. High temperatures are forecasted to be in the 90’s and, in some cases, over 100 degrees. Over the next few days, the heat doesn’t subside too much, with temperatures remaining well above normal in parts of the west. Heat records likely will be challenged in some parts of the region for several days in the upcoming week.

Also, a system in the Pacific being monitored for tropical development Saturday has an 80% chance that it organizes into a Tropical Depression in the next 48 hours. Conditions for strengthening for this system will only be favorable through Saturday and then whatever does form will begin to be shredded apart by upper-level winds on Sunday and Monday.

The Eastern Pacific Hurricane season will officially begin on May 15, which is only around three weeks away, with the first name of the season set to be Amanda. While it’s notable for systems to develop ahead of the official season, it’s by no means unprecedented.

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