For the first time in several years, a multi-day severe weather event is headed for Kansas with all modes of severe weather possible. While Scott has focused on Friday, this post will take a look at Saturday’s threat for severe weather, as well the threat coming early next week, and most importantly, the flooding aspect.

So, let’s start checking off our list, shall we?

  1. Saturday

Above is the risk area and probabilities for severe weather on Saturday as outlined by the Storm Prediction Center. Admittedly, this is a tough forecast, as a lot of it depends on what happens while you sleep overnight Friday into early Saturday. The overnight model runs continue to support the idea of a cluster of storms developing from the Red River to the Hill Country in Texas. Should this happen, it may tend to rob the moisture recovery from any storms that develop Friday night in southwest Kansas.

We’ll be monitoring the forecasts closely, but the trend has been for storms to develop around midday in Northern Oklahoma and move northeast during the afternoon. With earlier storm development, this would tend to lessen the severe weather threat, but the threat for flooding and heavy rains will exist.

We will have a much better handle on Saturday’s threat once we have an understanding of what’s happening Friday night.

Monday and Tuesday

After a break on Sunday, we reload the atmosphere for another two-day severe weather episode on Monday and Tuesday of next week. This system is forecast to have stronger wind fields than the system tomorrow and Saturday, which means a greater chance for severe weather (hail/wind/tornado). I know I sound like a broken record here, but we really won’t have a good grasp on the impacts early week system until we see how the atmosphere recovers from the first system, so check back here for later forecasts and updates.

Flooding Threat

One thing that is being overlooked with the upcoming severe weather event is the threat for renewed flooding across a large chunk of Central and Eastern Kansas. Grounds have been waterlogged in the last 30 days, with a wide section of the state receiving over a half-foot of rain and some areas getting over 15 inches of rain, which lead to major flooding on several mainstem rivers in Southern Kansas.

Observed rainfall from the last 30 days, ending on May 15, 2019

Here is the forecast for rainfall over the next seven days, lasting through next Thursday morning at 7 am CT:

As you can see, a wide area of at least 2-4″ of rain will be possible over a wide area of the Midwest, including Central and Eastern Kansas. With the setup expected in the next week, there will be some locations that see double the forecasted amounts. Any additional heavy rain in Kansas will go immediately to runoff and lead to more flash flooding and flooding of creeks, streams and mainstem rivers.

Here are a few things you could do over the next one to two days to get ready for another round of flooding:

  • Clean gutters and downspouts
  • Check window wells that may take on water and fortify water entry points
  • Formulate alternate routes to your home or work should flooding close your primary route

And if you’re going to be out driving, remember, that cars and water do not mix:

Tips for flood safety in cars