November 23, 2020

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Summery Weather Pattern to Bring Thunderstorm Chances to Many Areas of the U.S. This Week


  • Many areas east of the Rockies could see showers and storms this week.
  • A pair of cold fronts will help trigger the stormy weather.
  • Thunderstorms are common this time of year because humid air is abundant in many areas.

Many areas east of the Rockies will have chances of showers and storms this week as a pair of cold fronts track through the nation’s northern tier.

In the summertime, the atmosphere is often primed for the development of widespread showers and storms because warm and moist air usually is abundant. Frontal systems, upper-air disturbances and daytime heating combining with that humidity produce stormy weather at times.

Such is the case this week as two frontal systems help stir up numerous areas of showers and storms.

Early Week Front

Scattered showers and storms will affect a broad area on Tuesday, from the interior Northeast and eastern Great Lakes into much of the South. A few of the storms could turn severe with damaging wind gusts or localized flash flooding.

Current Radar, Watches and Warnings

(Watches and warnings are from NOAA’s Storm Prediction Center and the National Weather Service.)

The upper Texas coast, including Houston, is one area that could have an increased chance of flash flooding Tuesday afternoon through Tuesday night. That’s because this area saw heavy rain on Monday, which makes it more prone to possible flooding.

Tuesday’s Forecast

(Areas shaded green could see isolated to scattered showers or thunderstorms.)

The front will push off the Eastern Seaboard by midweek, while also stalling out over the South.

Scattered showers and storms with locally heavy rain could affect a large area on Wednesday, from Texas to the Gulf Coast and Southeast. A few severe storms are also possible.

Elsewhere, there might be some pockets of showers and storms along the front in the Northeast, and in the wake of its passage in the Great Lakes and Ohio Valley.

Wednesday’s Forecast

(Areas shaded green could see isolated to scattered showers or thunderstorms.)

Showers and storms will persist into Thursday in portions of the eastern Great Lakes, Southeast and in the Gulf Coast states.

Late Week Front

The Midwest and Northern Plains will see drier air behind the first front, but since it’s summer, the lower humidity won’t stick around for long.

Increasingly warm and humid air will make a return to the Northern Plains by Thursday, and then into much of the Midwest on Friday. That’s because of southerly winds developing ahead of a new cold front slicing through the nation’s northern tier.

On Thursday, thunderstorms from this front will affect parts of the Dakotas, Montana and Wyoming.

The chance of thunderstorms will spread eastward across much of the Midwest Friday into Saturday.

There could be some severe storms as well as locally heavy rainfall, but it’s too early to provide details.

Friday’s Forecast

(Areas shaded green could see isolated to scattered showers or thunderstorms.)

As you can see in the map below, most areas east of the Rockies could at least see some measurable rainfall through Saturday.

The highest chance for an inch or more of rain is from the eastern half of Texas into the lower Mississippi Valley, but other pockets of the country could see locally heavier totals as well.

Stormy Pattern Recap

Early Monday afternoon, four tractor-trailers were blown over by wind along Interstate 55 near Channahon, Illinois.

Farther east, there were numerous reports of downed trees and powerlines from eastern Virginia into parts of western Maryland, Pennsylvania and western New York.

The Weather Company’s primary journalistic mission is to report on breaking weather news, the environment and the importance of science to our lives. This story does not necessarily represent the position of our parent company, IBM.



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