ST. LOUIS — This is another day to be weather aware. This is a potentially high impact severe event.

They don’t get much more challenging than this event in terms of forecasting severe weather. This is because of the potential for severe weather and the time of day it may happen.

Severe weather risk near St. Louis
Severe weather risk near St. Louis

There is a very real chance that little if anything may happen at all. But, you need to remain weather aware in case something does happen. If it does, it would get very rough in a few spots.

Tuesday afternoon

There are several parameters that strongly favor isolated intense thunderstorms with very large hail and possibly even strong tornadoes over Missouri, especially northern Missouri this afternoon and early evening. However, there is an equally strong capping inversion in the atmosphere that looks strong enough to completely, or nearly completely, shut down storm development through today in our area. That being said, if storms do manage to break the cap, isolated, but very intense severe weather will be possible.

The most likely areas for that to happen look to be across northern Missouri into Iowa late this afternoon into this evening along a northward advancing warm front, with a secondary area developing overnight over southwest into south central Missouri.

Severe weather near St. Louis Wednesday

Cities at risk for severe weather
Cities at risk for severe weather

It is this later activity that has the greatest potential to impact the St. Louis area, generally south of I-70. There is also some potential for a third zone of storms to develop with the cold front that sweeps across the entire region around/between sunrise and 10 a.m. Wednesday.

This situation requires lots of watching, waiting and overall patience and understanding. The best action plan for the public this afternoon through early Wednesday is to be weather aware, but go about your regular routines. Keep your phones nearby, set to receive weather alerts. Keep the weather radios on if you have them. Frequently check back for updates on the progress of the developments (or lack there of) tonight through Wednesday morning.

This is a tough event to deal with from a public facing perspective. We want you to be watchful, but we don’t want to over alert/over warn. Best case, nothing happens, and we go off to enjoy the rest of the week. I know that’s what I’m hoping for!