Our storm system has arrived, as evidence by the widespread moderate to heavy rains that have fallen over Iowa during the overnight hours. Fortunately this opening salvo of precip did not bring severe weather with it, only some very much needed rain to the drought damaged soil of Iowa.
Now attention turns to tonight’s threat for severe weather. Unfortunately there are a lot of factors that will play into what happens today and how it all plays out is anyone’s guess.
The first and biggest factor is the rain and clouds currently over the state. As expected, the rain is moving out of the area quickly. But the clouds will linger and the longer they do, the less instability the atmosphere can muster up. This could greatly lessen the risk for severe weather today.
One other factor we’re monitoring is the impact storms to the south of Iowa this afternoon and evening affect the entire system. With all of these what ifs, the fact remains that there are some ingredients still playing into the threat for strong storms. Wind shear over Iowa should be supportive of supercell development. The only question is which mode of severe weather will be the primary threat.
This morning, our thinking is the threat for tornadoes has diminished greatly. If strong storms do develop, an isolated tornado or two is certainly possible. However I feel the greatest threat will come from strong damaging winds and some large hail associated with any storms which do develop. The duration of any severe weather tonight is also up in the air, again, depending on the amount of instability that develops over the state.
We’ll continue to monitor the situation and hope to bring you another update this afternoon.