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Severe weather, including tornado threat, expected to impact the Heartland

todayApril 26, 2024

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(NEW YORK) — Severe weather is expected to impact the Heartland on Friday and into the weekend, including a threat for tornadoes.

From Iowa to Texas, severe weather is forecast Friday afternoon and evening, with the highest tornado threat around Des Moines, Iowa; Omaha, Nebraska; and Kansas City, Missouri.

The rest of the Plains — including Tulsa, Oklahoma; Little Rock, Arkansas; and Dallas — could see damaging winds, large hail and an isolated tornado.

A tornado watch is in effect for northeast Texas – including Dallas – and parts of southeast Oklahoma through 6 p.m. CT. Friday.

A likely tornado hit east of Oklahoma City in Pottawatomie County Friday morning, according to the National Weather Service.

On Saturday, some of these severe storms could stretch as far north as Chicago; Milwaukee; Green Bay, Wisconsin; and Traverse City, Michigan. These areas will mostly see damaging winds and some hail.

The severe thunderstorms could also produce very heavy rain causing flash flooding, with the highest flash flood threat in Oklahoma, including Oklahoma City and Tulsa.

The highest tornado threat on Saturday will be in Kansas City, Missouri; Wichita, Kansas; Oklahoma City; and northwest of Fort Worth, Texas.

The tornado threat will decrease but not dissipate on Sunday. Severe weather with damaging winds, hail and an isolated tornado are possible in Kansas City, St. Louis, Little Rock, Dallas and Tulsa.

The flash flood threat will also move into Arkansas, including Little Rock, on Sunday.

The current tornado threat comes after Thursday saw four reported landspouts and tornadoes in four states — Kansas, Colorado, Wyoming and Utah, primarily in rural areas. Parts of Kansas also saw hail larger than a baseball and winds gusting up to 70 mph.

Meanwhile, classic spring whiplash is expected for the Midwest and the Northeast this weekend, as temperatures are forecast to flip from freezing to summer-like 80s.

Eleven states were on frost and freeze alerts Friday morning, from Michigan to Maryland, with many areas dipping to freezing or below.

A major warm-up is expected Saturday through Monday, with temperatures to skyrocket into the 80s from Chicago to New York City.

Chicago is forecast to reach 80 degrees on Saturday, while New York City could reach 80 on Monday. In Washington, D.C., temps could get close to 90.

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