By Brian Lada
Unsettled weather will kick off the new week in the Plains, delivering another round of severe thunderstorms from Texas to Tennessee.
This will follow up what has been an active weekend across the southern Plains and lower Mississippi Valley with thunderstorms on Monday continuing the threat of damaging wind gusts, hail and flooding downpours.
Dallas, San Antonio, Houston and Tyler, Texas; Shreveport, Louisiana; Little Rock, Arkansas; Springfield, Missouri; and Memphis Tennessee, are a few cities in the path of thunderstorms on Monday with some storms continuing into Monday night.
If you plan on traveling around these cities, you should allow for extra time to reach your destination as blinding downpours can slow traffic on the roads and create delays at the airports.
Heading into Monday night, the threat of severe weather is expected to decrease as violent thunderstorms scale back in intensity.
However, a few gusty thunderstorms may still impact communities in the Deep South with wind gusts strong enough to blow over trees and cause power outages.
An area of steadier rain is forecast to develop north of these severe storms with rain overspreading parts of Nebraska and Kansas.
Rain that falls over this area is not expected to be as heavy as the downpours associated with the thunderstorms from Texas to Tennessee. Instead, this will be a longer-duration rainfall, helping to ease the ongoing drought.
A steady, long-duration rain means that the ground has more time to soak in the much-needed rain water rather than it quickly running off into nearby streams and lakes as it does during quick bursts of heavy rain.
One to two inches of rain is possible through Monday night in areas of Kansas and Nebraska, with high temperatures struggling to reach the 60s in areas where rain falls through much of Monday.
As much as this rain will help to reduce the intensity of the extreme drought, much more is required to end the drought over the Plains.
Early indications show that after this system departs the region on Tuesday, there may not be another system similar to this that delivers a steady rain over a large area for at least a week, possibly longer.
This does not mean that there will be no rain across the region, however.
Thunderstorms may still develop across the region and deliver more beneficial rainfall, although this rain would be more localized rather than on a larger scale.
This graphic shows the amount of rainfall required in a one month period to end the current drought conditions. Photo courtesy of the National Climatic Data Center.
More at AccuWeather: Storms, Beneficial Rain Targets Plains Monday