Day of transition ahead of cooler & less humid weather; strong storms to develop later

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ROCKFORD (WREX) — Today will feature storm chances ahead of an approaching cold front. Cooler and less humid weather will return for Friday.

Areas of reduced visibility will remain in place through about 9 a.m.

Patchy morning fog has developed in a few spots, so as you hit the roads this morning, be mindful of that. The areas where fog is most dense are also the same areas where heavy rain fell overnight. Slow down and be sure to turn on those low beams if you run into especially dense fog. Visibility should improve by 9 a.m.

Cloudy skies will remain in place for most of the day. A cold front worked through the region overnight, bringing with it anywhere from 2″ to 4″ of rainfall along and north of Highway 20. In fact, flash flooding is possible today in Stephenson and Jo Daviess Counties! For that reason, the National Weather Service has placed these two counties and much of southern Wisconsin under a flash flood watch.

With a cold front located south of the Stateline, temperatures today may only climb into the lower 80’s. It may feel cooler than in previous days, but the humidity will remain in place. Later today, the same cold front that sagged through the region will reverse course and lift north as a warm front.

Strong to severe storms are possible today. Primary risk will be gusty winds, but large hail and an isolated tornado cannot be ruled out.

As this pushed through northern Illinois as a warm front, the greatest risk for tornadoes will follow. The overall threat for tornadoes remains fairly low, but any storm that manages to cross the warm front could gain a spin. In terms of severe risks, the Storm Prediction Center has most of the area along and west of I-39 under a slight risk (2 out of 5). The primary concern with storms that develop later this afternoon and into the evening will focus on gusty winds. Some pockets of large hail are possible with the strongest of storms, but this threat also looks fairly low.

An approaching cold front could spark strong storms later this evening.

Today’s storm chances will come in two separate rounds. The first round will likely develop around lunchtime with the lifting warm front. A second line will move through in association with the approaching cold front. It appears the timing with this comes in during the late-evening into the early overnight hours. Have that 13 Weather Authority app downloaded and notifications enabled. By doing this, you’ll receive alerts when and if severe weather is imminent for your location.

Showery conditions may continue before dawn tomorrow. Behind the frontal boundary, cooler temperatures and windy weather will take over. Highs climb into the middle 70’s tomorrow afternoon with winds occasionally gusting to 30 m.p.h. More seasonable temperatures stick around through Saturday, but warmer conditions take over Sunday into next week.

Justin Ballard

Justin Ballard

Morning Meteorologist

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Alex Kirchner

Alex Kirchner

Alex Kirchner is the 13 Weather Authority's chief meteorologist at 5, 6 and 10 p.m. 

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Tommie Owens

Tommie Owens is the meteorologist for 13 News Weekend.

Justin Ballard

Justin Ballard

Justin Ballard is the meteorologist for 13 News Today and 13 News at Noon.

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