Dangerous Storms Strike West Texas
UPDATED 8:45 PM CDT, April 7, 2012
UPDATED By WeatherBug Meteorologist, Fred Allen
Severe thunderstorms are rolling across western and central Texas tonight. In addition to large hail and destructive wind gusts, a few fresh storms will trigger flash flooding and contain a brief tornado or two.
A Severe Thunderstorm Watch
remains in place for western and central Texas. San Angelo, Midland and Abilene, Texas, are all included.
A line of dangerous thunderstorms is trickling southward pass the Interstate 20 corridor in western and central Texas tonight. The storms have had a history of producing very large hail, high winds and even a few tornadoes this evening in West Texas. Feeding the growing line of thunderstorms is a battle between warm, moist air ahead of a cold front stretching from Minnesota to Arizona, and much cooler, drier air swooping in behind it.
The slow-moving storms will continue to embark on a southerly trek, impacting many residents between Interstate 20 and 10 across the Lone Star State through Sunday morning. Cities such as Odessa, Midland, San Angelo and Junction, Texas, will all be in line to see these nasty thunderstorms.
The threats with these thunderstorms will be locally destructive wind gusts up to 70 mph and large hail, though a tornado cannot be completely ruled out.
Beyond the severe threat, the slow-moving nature of the thunderstorms are trigger flash flooding, as well as producing intense lightning seen on Earth Networks Total Lightning Network. Tapping abundant Gulf of Mexico moisture, the thunderstorms will easily produce 1 to 2 inches of rain in a short time span. This will cause excessive runoff to strain local storm drains and water will pool on roadways, raising the flooding concerns.
A Flash Flood Warning
is in place for West Texas tonight, including Sterling City. Here, local law enforcement is reporting 4 to 5 inches of water cover the intersection of U.S. highway 163 and 87. Another 1 to 2 inches will only add to the already dire flooding situation by causing rapid river rises within the city limits of Sterling, Texas.
The front will linger across Texas for Easter, but the severe threat will be much more isolated. Hail the size of golf balls will be the main threat in a few of the storms.
Hail the size of large apples pelted communities near Westbrook, Texas, while golf ball-size hail fell in Hamlin, Texas. McCaulley, Texas, measured a thunderstorm wind gust of 69 mph, while there have been 4 reports of possible tornadoes near Westbrook and Sterling City, Texas.
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