FIRST ALERT: Showers, few gusty storms possible Wednesday evening/overnight
Severe threat low, but not completely out of the question
ROCKFORD, Ill. (WIFR) - For a fifth consecutive day, the Stateline was treated to temperatures in the 70s or 80s. It’s the continuation of what’s been a nearly unprecedented streak of early April warmth! Only four other years since 1905 have logged five or more consecutive days in the 70s or 80s this early in the year. The streak is highly unlikely to extend to a sixth straight day Thursday, due in large part to the extensive cloudiness and occasional showers and thunderstorms that will be in place for much of the day.
A slow moving area of low pressure has already delivered us an initial round of showers and storms Wednesday afternoon, and more are on the way Wednesday evening and likely carrying into the overnight hours. The next batch of showers and thunderstorms is to arrive in the late evening hours, likely in the 9:00 to 11:00pm window.
These storms do have a history of having been severe earlier in the day Wednesday, so they’ll need to be watched closely as they lift into our area. Our thought, though, is that they’ll be on a weakening trend upon approach, and that further drops in intensity of the storms will continue during their travels through the Stateline.
Overall, the timing of the storms’ arrival is not one that’s generally considered to be conducive of any significant severe weather. With that said, there’s just enough warmth and moisture are present in our atmosphere to keep the air somewhat unstable for the next several hours. That’s the main reason our colleagues at NOAA’s Storm Prediction Center continue to place the Stateline in a Level 1, Marginal Risk for severe thunderstorms this evening and overnight. The thought is that one or two of the storms may pose a risk for dime-sized hail as well as a brief wind gust of up to 60 miles per hour, in addition to thunder, frequent lightning, and brief downpours.
Several more spokes of energy rotating around our area of low pressure will generate numerous chances for showers and a few embedded thunderstorms on Thursday, though it needs to be emphasized that rain-free hours are promised to be plentiful. A few peeks of mixed sunshine aren’t to be entirely ruled out either. Also worth noting is that this activity is to be much lighter and more scattered in nature.
Come Friday, we’ll be on the back side of this system, meaning rainfall chances gradually become more sparse. The greatest chances of rain appear to be early on in the day, with the vast majority of the rest of the day expected to be dry, albeit rather cloudy.
Another storm system is to threaten renewed rain chances late Saturday into Saturday night, perhaps carrying into early Sunday.
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