Heavy Rainfall, Severe Thunderstorms Both Being Monitored as Potential Threats Through Thursday
May has been a dry month thus far, with less than one inch of rainfall occurring over most of the Stateline in the month's first 13 days. All signs point to that trend changing in a big way over the next 24 hours and beyond.
An initial batch of showers and storms moved through most of the Stateline Wednesday Evening, bringing flashes of lightning, occasional rumbles of thunder, and brief downpours to most locations north of Interstate 88. While a break in the action's set to take us into the first hours of Thursday, more rainfall is on the way after midnight, and will take us through much of Thursday Morning. The next batch of rain is set to be much more widespread and longer-lasting. Thundery downpours will again be possible just about everywhere, and some small hail can't be ruled out in some of the stronger storms toward daybreak. Overall, though, the severe threat with this next round of storms is very low.
A break in the action still remains likely to occur between late Thursday Morning and the early to middle portions of Thursday Afternoon. What will be interesting to see is how much, if any sunshine pokes through the clouds. Should sunshine occur, even for an hour or two, our atmosphere would rapidly destabilize, a development that would help create an environment increasingly ripe for strong to severe thunderstorm development. On the other side of the equation, remaining cloudy all afternoon would greatly limit any severe weather threat.
As it stands now, the Storm Prediction Center's outlook puts credence in the notion that some sunshine will poke through the clouds for a time in the afternoon. Thus, most of the Stateline finds itself in the Level 2, Slight Risk for severe weather. All severe weather modes would be in play should storms be able to develop. Gusty winds would be the main threat, followed by hail, and even an isolated tornado. With significantly more moisture in the atmosphere to go along with a slow moving cold front, heavy rainfall will also be a threat worth monitoring.
It does appear as though the greatest threat for severe thunderstorms will be found south of Interstate 80, but we'll still need to keep an eye to the sky Thursday Afternoon and Evening, especially if we see any appreciable amount of sunshine.