By Renee Duff, AccuWeather meteorologist
August 11,2017, 11:12:12PM,EDT
Rounds of severe thunderstorms will raise the risk of property damage and flash flooding across a portion of the central United States through Saturday night.Several weak systems will emerge from the Rockies and give a boost to thunderstorm development over the Plains states.
The danger of severe thunderstorms will be accompanied by an increasing flood threat.
Areas along Interstate 40 from north-central New Mexico to Oklahoma, and southward along the Red River will be at greatest risk for flooding rainfall and locally severe storms into the weekend.
“Heavy rainfall rates up to 2 inches per hour at times will cause flash flooding in some communities,” AccuWeather Storm Warning Meteorologist Brian Koochel said.
The enhanced threat for flooding includes some larger cities, namely Oklahoma City and Tulsa, Oklahoma; and Amarillo and Wichita Falls, Texas.
The northern suburbs of Dallas may be brushed by the heaviest rainfall, while little to no rain may occur downtown.
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Individuals with plans to travel across the Plains along stretches of interstates 35, 40, 44, 70, 80 and 90 should be aware of the threat for adverse weather to affect a portion of their trip.
Some roads, especially those that drain poorly and are low-lying, could be impassable due to high water.
“Widespread rainfall totals of 1 to 3 inches are expected, with localized areas that see more persistent thunderstorm activity receiving up to 6 inches,” Koochel said.
This amount of rainfall will easily run off the already saturated soil, causing rises on small streams and rivers.
The threat for severe thunderstorms will be lower than the threat for flooding, but will not be zero. Some of the strongest thunderstorms could produce hail and damaging winds.
The core of heaviest rainfall will shift toward the lower Mississippi Valley by the end of the weekend.
Downpours may become even more frequent across the South as the storm continues to sweep eastward early next week.