Rain and storms will likely impact most of Arkansas later this week, especially into Friday. In the meantime, we will warm up significantly through mid-week. This, combined with deep moisture and some wind shear, will fuel the potential for severe storms.

Thursday’s strongest storms will be found over Texas and southern Oklahoma. Some could be marginally severe by the time they reach western Arkansas late Thursday night.

Storms will initially develop Thursday afternoon and evening, mostly over north Texas and parts of Oklahoma. These storms will be capable of producing very large hail along with damaging wind and perhaps a tornado.

As they move east toward Arkansas Thursday evening, they will weaken some. But they could maintain enough strength to bring some hail and gusty wind to northwest Arkansas Thursday evening.

Additional storms will likely continue developing over Oklahoma Thursday night, each of which should weaken as they approach northwest Arkansas. See the slideshow below for an idea as to how these may play out.

During the overnight hours, showers and storms will likely continue building into central Arkansas. These should be non-severe, though a few of those storms could be strong.

Going into Friday morning, rain and storms will likely diminish some. But the driving force for additional storms will remain at play into Friday afternoon. In the meantime, we will see warm, humid air continue to spread across central and eastern Arkansas. This will lead to another risk for severe storms Friday afternoon.

The Storm Prediction Center has already highlighted much of southern and eastern Arkansas for severe weather potential on Friday.

At this point in time, it appears more likely that Friday’s storms could produce tornadoes, damaging wind as well as large hail. Storms will eventually track east through late-afternoon, taking the risk of severe weather into Tennessee and Mississippi by the evening.

In the coming days, the Arkansas Storm Team will continue to monitor forecast trends and will bring you the very latest.