By Kristina Pydynowski, AccuWeather senior meteorologist
March 27,2017, 3:55:19PM,EDT
The unrelenting rounds of severe weather continue to take aim at the south-central United States with more damaging thunderstorms set to strike Tuesday into Wednesday.Severe weather will first target Oklahoma and Texas on Tuesday afternoon and evening before shifting to the Arklatex and lower Mississippi Valley on Wednesday and Wednesday night.
North of the severe weather, soaking rain will heighten the risk of localized flooding in the central Plains.
Scattered showers and thunderstorms set to start Tuesday will precede the main event. Where this morning activity gives way to some sunshine and warming, the atmosphere will be primed for violent thunderstorms to erupt in the afternoon.
“Severe weather on Tuesday looks to be centered in north-central to central Texas,” AccuWeather Enterprise Solutions Lead Meteorologist Eddie Walker said.
Cities at risk include Abilene, San Angelo and Wichita Falls, Texas. The threat zone will also expand to Oklahoma City and Lawton, Oklahoma.
“The whole gambit of severe weather risks are possible on Tuesday, from tornadoes to large hail, as well as damaging wind gusts and flooding,” Walker said.
The violent thunderstorms will then progress to the I-35 corridor in Texas on Tuesday night, threatening San Antonio, Austin and Dallas, and along I-44 to Tulsa, Oklahoma.
By Wednesday morning, the dangers of the strongest thunderstorms will transition to damaging winds and blinding, flooding downpours.
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A slower Wednesday morning commute with flight delays can be anticipated in San Antonio, Dallas and Oklahoma City.
Even where flooding does not ensue, downpours will create hazards for motorists by reducing visibility and heightening the risk of vehicles hydroplaning when traveling at highway speeds.
On Wednesday afternoon, severe thunderstorms will once again ramp up across southwestern Missouri, eastern parts of Oklahoma and Texas and western parts of Arkansas and Louisiana.
Cities in the threat zone on Wednesday afternoon include Tulsa, Oklahoma; Joplin and Springfield, Missouri; Houston and Tyler, Texas; and Shreveport, Louisiana.
In the wake of the main severe weather zone, showers and thunderstorms will return to central Oklahoma on Wednesday. A few of these thunderstorms can bring a renewed risk of hail and gusty winds.
The severe weather will press eastward Wednesday night, targeting Jonesboro and Little Rock, Arkansas; Jackson, Mississippi; and Monroe, Alexandria and Baton Rouge, Louisiana.
“Initially Wednesday afternoon and evening, strong to severe thunderstorms will impact the regions with damaging wind gusts, large hail and a few tornadoes,” Walker said.
“Impacts will transition Wednesday night to a mainly flooding threat with an enhanced flood risk occurring from southeastern Texas through much of Louisiana.”
Outside of any flooding, rainfall in the south-central U.S. is beneficial with a large part of the region abnormally dry or in the midst of a drought, according to the U.S. Drought Monitor.
Southern New Mexico and West Texas will largely miss out on rainfall with the Tuesday to Wednesday storm. Gusty winds will instead howl, once again heightening the fire danger and kicking up blowing dust.
Drier air will sweep into the southern Plains on Thursday as the storm and the severe weather threat shift to the central Gulf Coast states and western Tennessee Valley.
Residents of the south-central U.S. will not have much time to recover from this severe weather event as more damaging thunderstorms and heavy rain may target the region this weekend.