The severe weather threat continues across parts of the Texas panhandle extending up into the Oklahoma panhandle and southwestern Kansas this evening. Thankfully, Amarillo dodged a bullet this afternoon with severe storms staying off to the west and to the north. The previous Enhanced Risk outlook has been downgraded to a Slight Risk for the remainder of the night into Saturday morning; however, that does not eliminate the continued threat for a few severe storms during the overnight hours. Currently, we have one severe warned cell just northwest of Adrian which is moving off to the northeast at around 20mph. This will skirt the Amarillo area off to the northwest over mostly rural areas and not impact the city. Another severe warned storm is currently north of Amarillo over Dumas heading northeast at 20mph as well. Additional storm development along the dryline remains possible overnight, but widespread severe weather is not anticipated. Storms that do develop and manage to become severe will have damaging winds and large hail as the primary threats, but a tornado cannot be rule out. Folks in the areas where storms are ongoing will need to remain alert and have a way to receive weather warnings tonight.
By Saturday afternoon, additional threats for severe weather will exist along the dryline once again from the northern panhandle near the I-27 corridor and down into the Big Bend/Southwest Texas region. The best potential for severe weather tomorrow will likely be a bit further south and east than we saw today…from west Texas up into western Oklahoma which will feature air untainted by today’s activity. Moisture will also be on the increase and clouds will scatter out further west towards the dryline tomorrow afternoon which will lead to moderate instability levels by mid afternoon. The dryline will retreat west overnight tonight, but how far east it pushes tomorrow afternoon is still not clear in the short-range models. Best guess right now is that by tomorrow afternoon, the dryline will push east to between Amarillo down the I-27 corridor to just east of the Midland/Odessa area and then curve back to the southwest towards Ft. Stockton. Storms are expected to fire along the dryline after 3pm tomorrow, initially as isolated strong to severe (supercell) thunderstorms, with a tendency to backbuild after dark as the dryline begins to shift back to the west again. Large hail and damaging winds are expected to be the main threats; however a few tornadoes are possible Saturday afternoon with decent windshear in place. After sunset, we will see the storms gradually expand in coverage across the region with heavy rain and potential flooding being the main issue from late Saturday into early Sunday. The current outlook for Saturday will be updated overnight and again tomorrow morning, so be sure to check back when you get up tomorrow.
On Sunday, the Severe weather threat will shift east and south encompassing much of central Texas, the Hill Country, Rio Grande Valley region and the coastal bend regions of the state. With this still being two days out, it’s impossible to pinpoint exactly where the greatest threat of severe weather will be, as Saturday’s storms could have an impact on where that threat sets up, but current thinking is for scattered strong to severe storms across the Slight Risk region below by Sunday afternoon with large hail, damaging winds and a few isolated tornadoes possible. We’ll continue to monitor this and bring you the latest data as we get closer.
Rainfall Update: The latest precipitation forecast still pushes quite a bit of precipitation across the area beginning late Saturday night and lasting into early next week.