Strong, violent, long-track tornadoes appear possible tomorrow (Monday) afternoon and evening for parts of the Southern Plains. A dryline will advance east tomorrow afternoon from southern Kansas, south through western Oklahoma into western Texas/the Texas Panhandle. This dryline will act as an initiation focus for afternoon convection. Any storm that develops off of the dryline will quickly become severe posing a threat for tornadoes, large hail and damaging winds. Of even more concern is a warm front that will lie somewhere across central Oklahoma (possibly just north of I-40). This boundary will act to increase low-level shear, which will enhance the tornado threat in the vicinity of the front.
The best chance for tornadoes will be across western and central Oklahoma, the eastern Texas Panhandle and northwestern Texas. There will be morning convection across the Texas/Oklahoma Panhandles as well as in southern/central/northern Oklahoma. These storms will mainly pose a heavy rain and hail threat. The severe storms should develop after 2:00PM in western Kansas, western Oklahoma and northwestern Texas/the eastern Texas Panhandle. These storms will advance east through the afternoon evening hours. Unfortunately, it appears the severe threat will continue into the nighttime hours, so tornadoes are possible until around midnight.
Due to the elevated severe threat tomorrow, the Storm Prediction Center (SPC) has a moderate risk of severe storms for parts of Texas and Oklahoma, and an enhanced risk for arts of Kansas, Oklahoma and Texas (see Fig. 1). The moderate risk includes the OKC Metro as well as Enid, Lawton, Childress and Wichita Falls. The enhanced risk includes Tulsa, Ardmore, Amarillo and Abilene. Strong tornadoes are likely in the moderate and enhanced risk areas. Please note, severe weather is also possible in the slight and marginal risk areas.
As the storms move east of I-35 overnight, a large complex is likely, which will produce damaging winds, small hail and isolated tornadoes. Isolated flash flooding is also possible. Please make sure you have a plan in place if you live in this region in case a watch and/or warning is issued for your area. Do not be afraid, just be prepared!
Christopher Nunley is Meteorologist on Firsthand Weather, Lecturer in the Department of Geosciences at Mississippi State University (MSU), and a PhD Candidate (Earth and Atmospheric Sciences) at MSU. He earned his M.S. in Applied Meteorology at MSU, was an Assistant Cross Country Coach and taught at the University of North Texas, and was a Broadcast Meteorologist at KTEN-TV (just north of Dallas, Texas). Christopher’s main focus lies within teaching and inspiring prospective meteorology students, atmospheric research to further our understanding of atmospheric processes, and forecasting and analyzing extreme weather events to help save lives!