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Afternoon Thunderstorms Could Turn Severe On The Plains

By Justin McHeffey

A few scattered thunderstorms developed over the metro area around 1 p.m. Tuesday afternoon. As of 3 p.m., part of Denver, Douglas, Arapahoe, Adams, and Weld Counties continue to see some brief heavy rain, lightning, and dime-sized hail. We're expecting a round of thunderstorms in Denver between 3:15 and 6 p.m. tonight.


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Fast winds at 30,000 feet are moving from southwest to northeast over Colorado. This is producing upward motion in the middle and upper levels of the atmosphere. At the surface, we have a cold front that's dividing the unstable, moisture-rich air in the south from the drier air to the north. A few thunderstorms have developed in Douglas, Arapahoe, Elbert, and Weld Counties — more are expected throughout the evening.



The Storm Prediction in Norman, OK has drawn an area where the strongest cells are expected this afternoon. Southern Yuma and Washington Counties, eastern Arapahoe, and all of Elbert, Lincoln, Kit Carson, and Cheyenne Counties have the best chance of severe weather this afternoon. There's a 40 percent chance the SPC will issue a Severe Thunderstorm Watch in the next hour.
The most likely threats will be one-inch diameter hail and larger, with possible wind gusts over 60 miles per hour. The short-term models show updraft and downdraft strength that could support a cluster of storms that travel all the way into Kansas later tonight.
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Ed and I will have the latest at 5, 6, and 10 p.m. on CBS4 News.

Justin McHeffey provides nightly reports from the Mobile Weather Lab. He travels Colorado in search of Mother Nature's most powerful and beautiful conditions. Like his Facebook page Meteorologist Justin McHeffey and follow him on Twitter @WeatherMcHeffey.

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