Extreme weather hits the Northern Plains as a major heatwave prepares to spread across the country

Although most of the rain was concentrated across South Florida, a flood watch remains in effect for more than 4 million people from Fort Lauderdale to Key Largo, including Miami.

Typically, scattered showers in Florida are not a problem, but with so many places receiving 1 to 2 feet of rain recently, any downpour today could lead to more flooding. Looking ahead, the risk of additional flooding will continue to decrease in the coming days.

Over the past seven days, Miami and Fort Lauderdale have officially recorded more than 14 inches of precipitation.

Sunday is finally shaping up to be a “mostly” dry day for the South Florida region, although there is still a risk of occasional thunderstorms in this region.

Today’s serious risk

This afternoon and evening, severe thunderstorms are likely in two areas of the Northern Plains, including cities like Des Moines, Iowa; Omaha, Nebraska; Bismarck, North Dakota; Rapid City, South Dakota; and Minot, North Dakota.

Damaging winds, large hail and scattered tornadoes are all possible in this area as the afternoon progresses into the night.

Dangerous heat expands

This weekend, excessive heat warnings are in effect across parts of the Southwest as temperatures reach 100 degrees in cities like Phoenix, Arizona; Tucson, Ariz.; El Paso, TX; and Las Vegas.

This heat will extend eastward in the coming days, bringing a potentially record-breaking brutal heat wave to dozens of cities.

On Sunday, the heat reaches the Heartland and Midwest, with cities like St. Louis, Missouri; Nashville, Tenn.; and Little Rock, Arkansas, all facing record temperatures approaching 100 degrees.

The National Weather Service in Pittsburgh has already issued an excessive heat watch, in effect Monday morning through Friday evening, calling it a “prolonged and potentially historic heat wave.”

On Monday, the extreme heat risk covers Kansas City, Missouri, St. Louis, Missouri, and Des Moines, Iowa.

Tuesday’s brutal heat reaches the east. Record highs are likely in dozens of cities, from Ohio to Vermont, as temperatures climb into the mid/upper 90s.

Not only does the heat continue to expand later in the week, but the numbers continue to rise. Highs could approach 100 in cities like Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; Hartford, Conn.; and Concord, New Hampshire.

In the tropics

Despite a very quiet start to the 2024 Atlantic hurricane season, some potential activity is on the horizon. The National Hurricane Center is monitoring an area around the Bay of Campeche in the Gulf of Mexico, and there is currently a 50% chance of tropical development developing over the next seven days.

If this blob lives up to its potential, it could become the first named storm of the year, which would be Alberto.

Conditions in the tropics this summer are worrying, with ocean temperatures and atmospheric conditions poised to produce storms. There’s no guarantee this will be a banner year, but we’re still very early in the season and things can ramp up quickly.

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