Powerful Storms Strike Great Lakes, Central Plains
UPDATED 12:30 AM CDT, August 22, 2013
UPDATED By WeatherBug Meteorologist, Fred Allen
Severe thunderstorms packing a history of large hail and destructive wind gusts will rush over the Great Lakes and central Plains tonight and early Thursday.
A cold front dividing warm and moisture-laden Gulf of Mexico air ahead of it, with cooler, much drier Canadian air in its wake is fueling a lengthy line of damaging thunderstorms stretching from northern Michigan to central Wisconsin.
Their southeastward march will continue into south-central Wisconsin and potentially extreme northern Illinois and northeastern Iowa tonight. While large hail up to golf ball size and destructive wind gusts up to 70 mph will be the chief severe weather concerns, the threat will transition into a high wind event for parts of Iowa and northern Illinois early on Thursday morning.
Green Bay, and Appleton, Wis., will be most at risk for being impacted by these severe thunderstorms tonight.
Even residents at the tail end of the same cold front in Nebraska will have to contend with a cluster of fresh thunderstorms tonight into early Thursday morning.
Cities such as Norfolk, North Platte, and Lincoln, Neb., will need to keep their WeatherBug active and the chirp turned up loud in case any severe weather alerts are issued for your neighborhood early on Thursday morning. Here, the primary severe weather concern will be destructive wind gusts, though a few large hailstones cannot be discounted either.
If that weren`t enough, the thunderstorms will pack frequent and dangerous lightning, as well as trigger flash flooding. Locally, as much as 1 to 2 inches of rain could fall in a short time over the central Plains. Ultimately, these impressive totals could overwhelm urban storm drains with runoff, as well as send streams, rivers, and creeks over bank levels. If you approach a flooded road, it is best to, "Turn Around, Don`t Drown."
Golf ball size hail pelted Menomonie, Wis., while a tree was knocked down onto a building near Three Lakes, Wis. An 80 mph wind gust was also clocked around Big Springs, Neb., today.
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