Heavy Rain and Severe Storms Forecast for Central U.S. Starting April 25

Severe storms forecast to hit central US from April 25-28, 2024, bringing heavy rain, tornadoes, and flooding risks. Potential delays in agricultural planting due to the extreme weather.

Bijay Laxmi
New Update
Heavy Rain and Severe Storms Forecast for Central U.S. Starting April 25

Heavy Rain and Severe Storms Forecast for Central U.S. Starting April 25

A series of powerful storm systems are forecast to impact the central United States from Thursday, April 25 through Sunday, April 28, 2024, bringing the risk of heavy rain, severe thunderstorms, tornadoes, and flooding to the region. The storms will develop as dry air from the Desert Southwest collides with moisture-rich air from the Gulf of Mexico, creating an environment ripe for severe weather.

On Thursday, thunderstorms are likely to develop during the mid-morning to early afternoon hours across the central and southern Great Plains, potentially bringing heavy rain, lightning, large hail, and severe wind gusts. The Storm Prediction Center has issued a Level 3 out of 5 risk for parts of the region due to the increased potential for EF-2 or stronger tornadoes. Stronger, severe storms are possible Thursday night, particularly across west-central and southwest Kansas.

Friday and Saturday will see additional rounds of potentially severe storms, with the possibility of high winds, very large hail, and even tornadoes. The highest risk of severe weather is forecast for Friday in eastern Nebraska and western Iowa, and on Saturday along the Interstate 35 corridor from north of Dallas to Wichita, including Oklahoma City. Saturday evening and night are expected to bring widespread, very heavy storms that could lead to significant flooding.

Why this matters: The severe weather outbreak could pose a serious threat to life and property across a large portion of the central U.S. Residents in the affected areas should stay informed, have a plan in place, and be prepared to take shelter if necessary. The heavy rain also raises the risk of dangerous flash flooding.

Scattered strong storms may linger into Sunday morning before the system begins to weaken. However, the severe weather threat may persist into Monday in the lower Mississippi Valley and eastern Texas. Total rainfall over the four-day period is forecast to range from 2 to 4 inches in many areas, with locally higher amounts possible.

The heavy rain is also expected to impact agricultural regions, potentially leading to planting delays. "This active pattern could lead to delays in planting progress in some areas, particularly in Nebraska and Kansas, where drought has been increasing," according to agricultural forecasters. The Northern Plains and Canadian Prairies could also see widespread showers that may slow early season fieldwork.

Residents in the potential path of the storms should monitor forecasts closely in the coming days. The National Weather Service urges people to review severe weather safety procedures and to stay alert for rapidly changing conditions and possible warnings. With May historically being the most active month for tornadoes in the U.S., officials warn this severe weather event could be a sign of an active severe storm season ahead.

Key Takeaways

  • Severe storms forecast to impact central US from Apr 25-28, 2024.
  • Storms may bring heavy rain, thunderstorms, tornadoes, and flooding.
  • Highest risk of severe weather on Thu, Fri, and Sat with potential for EF-2+ tornadoes.
  • Significant flooding possible Sat evening/night, impacting agriculture and planting.
  • Active severe storm season expected, residents should monitor forecasts and prepare.