Menacing Storm Outbreak Unfolds Across Central US Wednesday

By Brian Lada, Meteorologist
May 7, 2014; 11:07 PM ET
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Portions of the Plains will be at risk of severe weather on Wednesday, the first of a two-day severe weather event across the region.

Following a dry start to the day, thunderstorms developed late on Wednesday afternoon and become more widespread heading into the night.

Three tornadoes were reported in Washington County, Colorado, Wednesday evening, according to NWS. Another tornado was reported in Phillips County.

Wind gusts up to 87 mph were reported near Meade, Kansas, along with golf ball sized hail throughout several counties in the state.

"Severe thunderstorms, some of which will produce hail to the size of baseballs and wind gusts greater than 70 mph, will continue through the nighttime hours, especially from the High Plains of Nebraska and northeast Colorado along a warm front northeastward into southern Minnesota," AccuWeather.com Meteorologist Brian Edwards said. "Another threat, mostly for large, damaging hail will persist from south-central Kansas through central Texas overnight."

Those from central Texas to Wisconsin and back into northern Nebraska should be prepared for storms that could produce damaging wind gusts in excess of 65 mph, hail as large as baseballs and blinding downpours.

These storms will be strong enough to put property at risk with winds that could blow over power lines as well as hail large enough to dent vehicles.

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Cities in the path of these severe storms include Lubbock, Texas, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, Wichita, Kansas, Kansas City, Missouri, Omaha, Nebraska, Sioux Falls, South Dakota, and Minneapolis, Minnesota.

If you live in or around any of these cities, you should prepare for travel delays, especially on the roadways.

Driving at night during a heavy downpour can be treacherous as rain could make it difficult to see not only the lines on the roads, but also vehicles around you. Driving at a reduced speed can lower the chance that you get in a weather-related accident in such a situation.

The threat for severe thunderstorms will continue across portions of the Plains headed into Thursday and Thursday night. These storms will once again be capable of producing large hail and damaging winds.

For the latest on the severe weather, continue to check back with AccuWeather.com at our Severe Weather Center.

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