Thunderstorms East Of Tulsa, Fire Danger To The West
TULSA, Oklahoma - Thunderstorm potential will remain today as a powerful upper level storm system moves across the central plains helping to move a dry line and cold front across the state. Strong to severe storms will attempt to develop near the dry line by midday to early afternoon and move rapidly northeast. The highest chance for storms will remain across far eastern Oklahoma into western Arkansas as the afternoon progresses yet a few storms may attempt to develop near the metro by midday into the early afternoon as the system nears the region. A few elevated storms are possible this morning across southeastern Oklahoma into eastern sections of the state. But these are not expected to be significant other than some small hail and gusty wind potential. Locations west of the dry line this afternoon will remain in Red Flag Warnings with extremely fast fire spread conditions due to extremely low relative humidity and strong west winds. Locations across the western third of the state will remain near historic fire danger conditions.
Low level moisture has been spreading northward into the state overnight in the form of upper 50 and lower 60 degree dew points. A few scattered showers and storms have been developing on the axis of stronger winds and moisture. These are not expected to be “surfaced based” meaning the severe weather threats will be low or very limited to small hail.
Later this morning, very strong winds aloft will move across the western high plains of Texas into northwest Oklahoma and southwest Kansas. This will begin lifting the atmosphere across the plains. Colder air aloft will begin to move eastward and help to destabilize the atmosphere during the late morning to early afternoon hours. A surface area of low pressure located across central Kansas will move eastward while the attendant dry line positioned across western Oklahoma begins moving eastward. The dry line will be nearing the I-35 corridor by the noon hour with a low chance for scattered storm development directly along the dry line. As the dry line continues moving east, additional storms, scattered in nature, will attempt to fire between 1 pm and 3 pm near or east of the Tulsa metro and should quickly move northeast. Strong wind shear may initially disrupt updraft growth along the dry line for a short period before storms begin maturing as they move eastward. Strong vertical velocities and the presence of some dry mid-level air will promote large hail along with severe wind potential for some storms. The initial development of storms this afternoon across eastern OK should remain discrete before storms attempt to form a line or cluster of storms across western Arkansas into northeast Texas. This would favor super cellular structures also capable of tornadic activity across extreme eastern Oklahoma and western Arkansas. The fast nature of the system should support storms exiting far eastern Oklahoma between 7 pm and 10 pm. Not all locations will experience storm activity today.
A surface cold front will sweep across the region later tonight bringing much colder weather back to the state this weekend, including the potential for a light freeze or frost Sunday and Monday morning. The weekend highs will keep Saturday in the upper 40s and Sunday the lower 50s along with partly cloudy and blustery northwest winds Saturday and lower wind speeds Sunday. Wind advisories will more than likely be extended into Saturday along with some fire weather products.
Monday into Tuesday pleasant weather will persist with south winds returning Tuesday as highs move into the mid or upper 70s before another fast-moving front clears the state Tuesday night or Wednesday morning. Low level moisture is expected to be shunted too far southeast of the state for any real chance of showers or storms and no pops will be included for this system. A strong looking system should arrive late next week into early weekend with additional storm chances for the state.
Thanks for reading the Friday morning weather discussion and blog.