Severe Weather Likely in Texas Into Tuesday Evening

ED ZURGA/EPA /LANDOV

A massive tornado tore through Moore, Oklahoma Monday. Weather forecasters anticipate more severe weather will hit Central Texas on Tuesday afternoon and evening.

A day after a massive tornado ripped through Central Oklahoma, the National Weather Service predicts severe storms will move across a swath of Central and North Texas Tuesday afternoon and evening.

There is potential for tornadoes in the Dallas-Fort Worth area. The Weather Service’s Fort Worth office recorded 55 mph winds early Tuesday afternoon, according to the Service’s Twitter account.

In Central Texas there could be isolated chances of tornadoes, said Mark Lenz, a forecaster with the National Weather Service.

“The main threat is large hail, golf-ball size or larger,” Lenz told StateImpact Texas.

In Oklahoma, Monday’s tornado was the second major twister in recent history to hit Moore, population 56,315. In 1999, the strongest tornado ever recorded, the so-called Moore Tornado, devastated the town and killed 44 people. The 1999 tornado registered as an EF5 on the Enhanced Fujita Scale. Learn about the Enhanced Fujita Scale here.

Back in Texas – barring damaging tornadoes and hail — much of the state could use a good soaking. As of mid-May, 97 percent of the state is in some form of drought.

Any of the thunderstorms passing through Texas Tuesday afternoon could produce one to two inches of rain per hour, said Lenz.

Unfortunately, even if strong storms pass over Central Texas and drop several inches of rain, it won’t put much of a dent in the ongoing drought. For that “we need a prolonged wet period to get that runoff to replenish the lakes,” Lenz said.

Central Texas’ two major reservoirs, Lakes Travis and Buchanan, have been steadily depleted over the past months and now sit at 39 percent full.

David Barer is a reporting intern with StateImpact Texas.

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