Severe threat to ramp up across Midwest
After a long stretch of fairly calm weather for much of the Midwest, an approaching storm system will destroy the serenity of some residents until Sunday evening.
After seemingly endless rounds of storms in summer, the general weather pattern in the Midwest was largely unremarkable in terms of buoyant weather for much of the fall. The same storm system that brought heavy rain and some mountain snow to the northwest over the past week to reach that end will change that trend as it pushes east into Monday.
A strong cold front associated with this storm system will be the main driver steering explosive storms late on Sunday.
"Thunderstorms are expected to occur east of Dakotas on Sunday afternoon, with the main threat being wind and hail damage," said AccuWeather meteorologist Brandon Buckingham. "During the afternoon, the thunderstorms are expected to form a single line of gusts."
This gust line is unlikely to develop until late afternoon before a cold front stretching south from far-eastern North Dakota to northeastern Nebraska. As the cold front marches east into the evening hours, the gust line will lengthen and eventually stretch from central Minnesota through central Iowa to southeast Nebraska and northwest Kansas.
"In the evenings, noxious straight-line winds are likely to be the main threat from thunderstorms," added Buckingham. An isolated tornado is also possible.
An AccuWeather Local StormMax ™ of 70 mph is forecast when noxious winds blow over parts of the north-central United States.
Travel disruptions are likely to develop across the region as these severe storms also trigger hail and heavy downpours.
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"Residents and travelers along the Interstate-29 corridor from Fargo, North Dakota, south to Omaha, Nebraska, could see rapidly changing conditions as thunderstorms explode and sweep the area," Buckingham said. "Drivers on freeways 30, 80, 90 and 94 should watch the sky closely to approach thunderstorms."
As the cold front pushes east overnight on Sunday, thunderstorms and heavy rains will march further east, reaching Wisconsin, western Illinois and Missouri by sunrise Monday.
"The storm threat is expected to decrease significantly over this period," added Buckingham.
When the cold front flows into the Great Lakes on Monday, it will encounter a more stable air mass that does not have all of the ingredients needed for the widespread storm.
Instead of a widespread threat of noxious gusts of wind or hail, storms that develop ahead of the frontline on Monday will primarily act as rainmakers.
In contrast to the organized gust line on Sunday, periods of heavy rain and some local gusty thunderstorms will develop in large parts of the Great Lakes on Monday. Affected areas will be parts of the Canadian province of Ontario south to north of Illinois and Indiana.
Generally, up to an inch of rain is expected to fall over the Great Lakes on Monday. However, some locations trapped under the heaviest rainfall can easily record up to 2 inches of rainfall. Areas where the heaviest rainfall is most likely include northeast Minnesota, northern Wisconsin, and northern Michigan, including the Upper Peninsula.
Flash floods can result from heavy rain, especially in lower or poorly drained areas.
While Monday's rainfall can cause flash floods for some, rain is beneficial for others. Although many areas in the Great Lakes region saw near-normal rainfall in September, some drier locations will benefit greatly from this rainy event. A handful of sites in Minnesota, Illinois, Michigan, and Indiana are currently experiencing unusually dry or moderate drought conditions, according to the United States Drought Monitor.
Once one such place is Duluth, Minnesota. In September, Duluth recorded a total of 0.85 inches of rain - just 21% of its average rainfall for the entire month. The city hasn't seen any measurable rainfall this month, but Sunday night through Monday its dry streak will likely be possible with a quick 1 to 2 inch of rain.
The Great Lakes won't be the only region struggling with soaked rain on Monday. A combination of the remaining moisture from the former Hurricane Delta and moisture from the Atlantic will result in heavy rain being released on parts of the mid-Atlantic and the northeast on Monday.
Calm weather will return to much of the central part of the nation on Tuesday as a large area of high pressure will develop over the Ohio Valley. This high pressure area will help keep areas from the Midwest to the Southeast dry and comfortable until at least midweek.
Forecasters say the coldest air yet this season is likely to hit the North Central states by the end of the week.
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