Heavy rains and severe thunderstorms possible this afternoon

If there’s anything we’ve learned over the past year, it’s that you should watch out for the possibility of severe weather. With a severe thunderstorm watch issued this hour, it’s time to do it.

The National Weather Service Storm Prediction Center in Norman, Oklahoma issued a severe thunderstorm watch for much of Iowa until 10 p.m. tonight. It’s in effect for 62 of Iowa’s 99 counties, including almost all of our listening area. This means that the conditions are ripe for the development of severe weather phenomena in our region.

A cold front is sweeping through Iowa today, accompanied by humidity. Temperatures at 2 p.m. in Iowa ranged from 88 degrees at Oskaloosa to 61 degrees at Storm Lake. Dew points are also quite high in the front of the front, giving storms additional fuel as they form. A line of storms in central Iowa is moving northeast. As of this writing, no severe weather warnings are in effect in Iowa. However, the thunderstorms are intensifying.

You can keep an eye on the radar HERE.

As the cold front passes, there is a risk of everything from hail to destructive winds, flash floods and even tornadoes. The National Weather Service in the Quad Cities says between 1 and 2 inches of rain is possible in the Cedar Rapids area through tonight.

CBS 2 meteorologist Rebecca Kopelman said the main threat from severe weather comes in the form of strong winds as thunderstorms spread with the cold front.

Please stay alert for the weather the rest of today and tonight. Relief from the unusually hot and humid conditions for the season arrives tomorrow, when highs may not reach 70.

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Joseph D. Whitman

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