Weekly Weather Recap – 29 April, 2022

Welcome to the final OU Nightly Weekly Weather Recap of the Spring semester!

Norman, OK

It has been a quiet week of spring as April comes to an end. Temperatures this week have remained in the 60s and 70s, with scattered clouds and sun. Norman managed to dodge isolated storm chances this week.

Despite the lack of storms the first part of this week, the NWS Norman still advises Sooners to stay vigilant and weather aware as the peak of spring severe weather season is imminent heading into May. 

A few rain showers lingered around Norman Thursday morning on OU’s campus, as temperatures started off in the low 60s. Winds were breezy this week, with gusts as high as 38 miles per hour on Thursday, according to the NWS Norman.

Fire Weather

A large wildfire burned this week across southern Nebraska, fueled by gusty winds and low humidity. Progress was tweeted by the Nebraska Emergency Management Agency on Monday.

As of Thursday, the wildfire was 88 percent contained and had burned 43,582 acres.

Uniquely, a rare sight was seen and heard across Louisiana and Mississippi on Wednesday. The Mississippi Emergency Management Agency shared the following tweet:

Severe Weather

Monday through Thursday featured a relatively quiet week in terms of severe weather compared to previous weeks. Several severe thunderstorm warnings were issued by the NWS Wakefield on Wednesday for portions of eastern Virginia.

These storms included quarter-size hail, damaging winds up to 60 miles per hour, and frequent cloud-to-ground lightning. 

Severe thunderstorm warnings were also issued this week in southeastern Colorado from the NWS Pueblo for storms packing winds in excess of 60 miles per hour, as well as penny-size hail. 

Fortunately, no tornadoes were reported Monday through Thursday of this week across the continental United States. 

Winter Weather

A warm start to the week in northern Michigan turned cold by Tuesday, as temperatures in the mid to upper 70s were replaced with temperatures in the 20s, according to the NWS Marquette.

A few snow showers accompanied the cold spell this week in Michigan. To the south, there was no snow in the Ohio River Valley, but frost. Frost advisories and freeze warnings were issued.

The NWS in Cincinnati recorded temperatures in the 30s on Wednesday, April 27, which is past their average final freeze of the season of April 16. 

Your Weekend Forecast

The NWS Norman has issued an enhanced risk for severe weather on Friday, April 29 for portions of north central Oklahoma, including northern Oklahoma City. 

Although Norman technically lies in the slight risk just to the south, storms will still be capable of producing damaging winds of 60 to 80 miles per hour, baseball-size hail, and tornadoes. 

Storms are expected to affect middle Oklahoma between 4 and 10PM CDT, so keep an eye to the sky on your commute home from work or plan to move your evening activities indoors and away from windows if inclement weather strikes.

Saturday will be a pleasant day, with sunshine returning and temperatures topping off near 80 degrees. Winds will be breezy out of the northwest at 10 to 15 miles per hour.

Rain and storm chances will return for the latter half of the weekend as temperatures climb up into the upper 70s.

Your National Forecast

A moderate risk for severe storms, which is a level 4 out of 5, is in effect for portions of northeastern Kansas and southeastern Nebraska on Friday, according to the Storm Prediction Center

Storms will be capable of producing large hail, damaging winds, and several tornadoes, some of which could be strong or violent. Cities in this risk include Topeka, Kansas and Lincoln, Nebraska.

On Saturday, the severe weather threat will shift eastward into the Ohio River Valley, where a slight risk for severe weather will be present.

Cities such as Chicago, Indianapolis, and Evansville, Indiana will be under this risk, with the potential for large hail, damaging winds, and isolated tornadoes.

Sunday, the severe weather threat returns to the Southern Plains, this time targeting the Texas and Oklahoma panhandles, as well as extreme eastern New Mexico.

A slight risk is in effect for these areas, including Amarillo and Lubbock, Texas for the threats of large hail, damaging winds, and isolated tornadoes. 

As the Central and Southern Plains gear up for an active Friday, fire weather conditions will be on the increase adjacent to the severe threat just to the west along a dry line.

The NWS Norman has issued a Red Flag Warning for portions of western Oklahoma and western north Texas between 1PM and 12AM CDT Friday. 

The NWS reports that critical fire conditions will be present due to southwesterly winds between 20 and 30 miles per hour with gusts over 45 miles per hour, humidity as low as five percent, and temperatures in the mid to upper 90s.

It is advised to avoid outdoor burning as fires will be easy to spark and will be difficult to contain if they rapidly spread.

The NWS in Mount Holly, New Jersey has also issued a Red Flag Warning on Friday until 10PM EDT for New Jersey and eastern Pennsylvania, including Philadelphia. 

Winds could blow between 10 and 20 miles per hour from the northwest, with occasional gusts at 30 miles per hour, as relative humidity drops to 10 percent.

The Northern Plains can also expect heavy rains beginning Friday and lasting through the weekend. The NWS in Grand Forks warns that moderate rainfall could lead to flooding of roadways and fields. If you approach a flooded roadway, turn around, don’t drown!

Another winter storm will affect parts of the Northern Rocky Mountains this weekend as well. The GNF Avalanche Center in Bozeman, Montana advised that snowfall on Friday can lead to avalanches throughout the weekend.

Take extreme caution this weekend if out on any skiing slopes. Temperatures in the region are expected to also drop 10 to 20 degrees below average, according to the National Weather Service.

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