Hot and humid today. The afternoon will be much more active compared to the last couple of days. A cold front arrives in the region and will fire off thunderstorms across the region. Some of those storms may be strong to severe. Here’s a breakdown of what to plan for and when.

WHAT WE ARE TRACKING
A cold front will sweep through the region Wednesday afternoon into the evening. The chance for storms will increase through the afternoon. The cold front won’t be the only feature that may initiate storms, but it is the feature that will correspond with the timing of the greatest potential for strong to severe storms. Storm Team 27 will be watching for isolated storm development early in the afternoon as that could limit the strength of mid-afternoon storms. Any clouds early in the day may slow down the daytime spike in temperatures. That also could limit the strength of afternoon storms.

That said, the expectation is for the cold front to encounter a warm air mass with high temps in the mid-80s. An abundance of moisture will be present with dew points in the upper 60s to around 70° early in the afternoon. Strong winds in the atmosphere above will also be present and aid in the development of stronger thunderstorms.

The Valley is highlighted under the slight risk level, or level two of five, from the Strom Prediction Center in Norman, Oklahoma. A “slight risk” means scattered strong to severe storms are expected to develop in the shaded region.

TIMING AND IMPACTS
While any storm that develops Wednesday afternoon has the potential to be strong, the key time frame will be between 2 p.m. and 8 p.m. During that time we will be monitoring the radar closely.

The primary hazard will be storms capable of producing severe wind gusts. There is also a chance for pockets of moderate to large hail to develop in storms with strong cores. Flooding is something else that can occur. We will need to watch for “training” thunderstorms, meaning storm cores repeatedly moving over the same areas. Any training of storms could result in localized flooding.

The tornado threat with this system is low but not completely zero. While the setup does not suggest a good environment for tornadic storms, there is always a chance for quick and brief localized spin-ups as storms interact with the local environment and surface boundaries produced by other storms.

Severe wind gusts in strong storms will be the primary severe threat Wednesday.

WHAT COMES AFTER?
After 10 p.m., our severe threat comes down quickly. We will still have the chance for some overnight rain and a few isolated thunderstorms remain possible, but those will not be as strong. Temperatures will be a little cooler Wednesday night with lows in the mid-50s. Thursday will be much cooler with highs only making it to around 70°. Expect lots of clouds and we will have more spotty showers with a chance for a few rumbles of thunder. Any Thursday thunderstorms are not anticipated to be strong at this time.