Some risk of severe thunderstorms

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Hello bloggers,

There is a chance of severe thunderstorms in the forecast for the next four days. Risks are level 2 out of 5 every day right now around Kansas and every day is a little different, starting today. Kansas City is at a 1 in 5 risk of severe weather today as this weak system passes through Kansas:

7:00 a.m. Surface map

This map above shows surface conditions at 7:33 a.m. There is a fairly well defined surface low this morning with a warm front and a not so well defined cold front. That’s why I made the broken red and blue lines. At the end of the day, it will be even weaker. There will be a weak wind shift line, or cold front, near Kansas City at 5 p.m. and we will be watching closely for any thunderstorm development.

Here is today’s risk:

Chance of severe weather today

Chance of severe weather today

From the Storm Prediction Center: “The greatest severe weather threat for today and tonight appears to be over parts of central/eastern Oklahoma in the western Ozarks region, where up to a few supercells with hail, isolated strong gusts and a tornado are possible”.

Kansas City, and our viewing area, is at a low risk level 1 out of 5, the dark green tint. We will be watching closely for thunderstorms developing this afternoon or evening. The best luck is in this level 2 out of 5 region.

The risk then increases a little on Thursday as you can see here:

Chance of severe weather on Thursday

Chance of severe weather on Thursday

Thursday’s risk from the SPC:

A dry line could sharpen across the higher terrain of Southwest Texas across the vicinity of the South Texas Plains and Panhandle by late Thursday afternoon. This may provide guidance for at least storm initiation attempts, as a moderately large CAPE develops in the presence of steep lower/mid tropospheric lapse rates. However, with the dry line likely to be retreating by early evening, if not sooner, sustained development of vigorous thunderstorms still seems unlikely.

Enhanced low-level convergence near the dry line and warm frontal intersection in parts of northwestern Oklahoma into adjacent southern Kansas appears to provide the best focus for the development of isolated severe storms, especially early Thursday evening as a low level jet from the south begins to strengthen from 30-50+ kt. Although the mid/upper flow is of modest strength, deflection of the winds with height will likely contribute sufficient shear for the supercells. These can present a risk of producing large hail and possibly a few tornadoes, before severe hail becomes the most significant risk, as storms tend to spread north of the warm front, along the axis of the jet at low altitude, towards the vicinity of the lower Missouri valley later. Thursday evening.

Prior to this activity, storms driven by forcing associated with lower/mid tropospheric warm advection, spreading across central/eastern Kansas into the lower Missouri Valley earlier in the day, may also exhibit at least one some risk of severe hail.

Kansas City is in this second day of risk, and as you can see from the SPC discussion, our risk is significantly lower than areas closer to Wichita. Even this risk is a level 2 out of 5 risk. A warm front will rise to the north and this will likely be the center of thunderstorms on Thursday night that could impact our region.

The risk then increases a little to the west where storm chasers will likely head on Friday:

Chance of severe weather on Friday

Chance of severe weather on Friday

In Kansas City on Friday we will have a nice hot and humid day with increasing southerly winds. Temperatures can reach the lower 80s. The chance of rain will likely drop to zero on Friday.

7 p.m. Friday surface forecast:


7 p.m. Friday

This map above shows a strong surface cyclone forming near Denver. This has a central pressure of 984 millibars. This equals 29.05 inches of pressure. Pressure is measured in millibars or inches of mercury. Pressure is a measure of the weight of the atmosphere above us. The conversion from inches of mercury to millibars is 29.92 inches at 1013.25 millibars. This is taken as the average surface pressure corrected to sea level worldwide. When the pressure is below 29.92 inches it is considered low pressure and when it is above 1013.25 millibars it is considered high pressure. It is a very strong depression.

The pressure gradient will become strong with strong winds over the western plains and slightly stronger winds here in Kansas City, but we are at the eastern edge of these stronger winds. The blue tint indicates winds around 30 knots or 35 miles per hour. Over western Kansas, winds will gust to 50 or possibly 60 miles per hour on Friday.

If you watched our special on spring weather last month, you’ll remember that this is the expected time frame for the arrival of this storm. But that doesn’t mean Kansas City will be hit with major thunderstorms. We have yet to see how each day sets in. The most likely location will be west of here, then Saturday night as it moves in, we’ll have our best chance of severe thunderstorms in Kansas City.

Saturday, the fourth SPC risk day shows risk closer to our region as a stronger front moves in.

Chance of severe weather on Saturday

Chance of severe weather on Saturday

  • Forecast for today: Mostly cloudy with a few showers and maybe a thunderstorm in the afternoon or evening. There are a few showers around Kansas City this morning. High: 63 degrees
  • Thusday: 20% chance of showers or thunderstorms in the morning and 30% chance of showers or thunderstorms in the evening. High: 70 degrees
  • Friday: Warmer and windier. Southerly winds 20 to 30 miles per hour gusting to 40 miles per hour. High: 82 degrees

Tomorrow is school day at K. Our weather team will be at Kauffman Stadium with the Science City scientists and we’ll be running experiments and meeting the kids. There may be some interesting clouds to describe while we’re there. The show starts at 10 a.m., and then we’ll have a meet and greet with the kids in Lot J afterwards. And then Wes Peery, Jeff Penner and I will throw the first pitch at 1 p.m. Will there be thunderstorms on Thursday? It is better that there is not. This warm front will approach. The best chance of thunderstorms is Thursday evening. We will keep our eyes on the sky!

Thank you for spending a few minutes of your day reading the weather blog and sharing this weather experience.


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