Only days after an outbreak of strong tornadoes tore through parts of the central U.S. and blizzard conditions lashed the northern tier, another very similar volatile storm system will deliver the same extreme weather conditions to many of the same states Tuesday into Wednesday.
In the warmer side of this storm system, more than a dozen states, from Wisconsin to Texas, are again at risk for severe weather. The most probable location of damaging winds and tornadoes is in Iowa, Illinois, Missouri and Arkansas.
Here’s what to expect around the country.
Storm threats for the Midwest begin early.
The severe weather is threatening to disrupt the mayoral runoff race in Chicago, where officials urged residents on Monday to vote early. The storm could also disrupt elections in Wisconsin.
“Strong, potentially long track tornadoes are possible, in addition to large hail and damaging winds,” Storm Prediction Center forecasters said Tuesday morning. Some of which are likely to occur at night.
“The danger of a rain-shrouded tornado in the dark is significantly higher than it is during the daytime hours, when everybody’s out and about, paying attention,” said Jon Green, a Supervisor for Johnson County, Iowa, parts of which were slammed just days ago by violent weather. A 24-unit building in Coralville, about 20 miles south of Cedar Rapids, was rendered “uninhabitable,” Mr. Green said. A 2020 derecho storm, he added, had left residents particularly on edge.
The National Weather Service office for Quad Cities, a group of cities in Iowa and Illinois, said the area could receive three rounds of severe weather beginning Tuesday afternoon. The second and third rounds will arrive Tuesday evening and early Wednesday. At the most severe point, storms are expected to be moving at 50 to 60 miles per hour.
The South braces for tornadoes later in the day.
By late Tuesday night, severe weather will begin moving over parts of the South. In the southern section of Arkansas and Texas, forecasters said confidence was increasing in the potential for rare and dangerous overnight tornadoes and damaging winds. Nocturnal tornadoes are not rare, but stronger nighttime tornadoes, like what could occur here, are.
Meteorologists with the Weather Service in Little Rock, Ark., warned residents on Tuesday morning to remain alert for this very reason.
“Severe weather fatigue is very real,” forecasters said. Tuesday night’s forecast, with threats after midnight, may lead to “a false sense of security as nothing happens during the day,” they warned.
The timing of the storms could lead to a “higher vulnerability,” forecasters said, stressing the importance of staying aware and having multiple methods of receiving alerts, even those that can wake a person up from sleep.
The Upper Midwest and Rockies will get snow.
To the north of the center of the storm system, heavy snow of a foot to even two feet is possible from the Rockies to the upper Midwest. These snow amounts could challenge some April snow records in the Dakotas and northwest Minnesota, forecasters with the Weather Prediction Center said Monday afternoon.
In parts of Utah, the storm delivered gusty winds and snow on Monday, the Weather Service said, warning that travel conditions would only deteriorate. Part of a major highway had closed because of “slide offs and increasing avalanche hazard,” according to the Utah Department of Transportation.
More than 100 miles of the Interstate 90 also closed on Monday night because of the storm, the South Dakota Department of Transportation said. As the storm continues to move across the state, closures would likely be extended, officials added, and roads may remain closed for several days.
Derrick Bryson Taylor contributed reporting.