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Storms in southern Plains could reach Md. on Friday

A weather system that is spawning severe storms across the southern Plains states is forecast to reach the East Coast on Friday, bringing a chance for strong (but not likely severe) storms here and colder temperatures.

The Storm Prediction Center is cautioning of a risk for tornadoes, large hail and damaging winds Wednesday afternoon and evening in parts of Kansas, Missouri, Oklahoma and Texas. Most of Missouri was under a tornado watch as of early Wednesday afternoon.

Storm risks are expected to shift eastward Thursday, with the most danger along the Mississippi River Valley.

The storms are sprouting along a boundary between southern warmth and northern chill. As of 2 p.m. Wednesday, temperatures were in the 70s and 80s on the southeastern side of the boundary in those states, and in the 30s and 40s on the other side, according to the Weather Channel.

That warm air is expected to dominate in Maryland on Wednesday, Thursday and into Friday. But the stormy weather is forecast for Friday afternoon, cooling temperatures down by 15 degrees or more.

Storms are unlikely to be severe by the time the system reaches the East Coast, according to the storm center. A 5 percent chance of severe weather is expected Friday along the mid-Atlantic and southeast coasts on Friday, according to the center.

The National Weather Service's Baltimore/Washington forecast office is calling for an 80 percent chance of rain and storms, with more than an inch of rain expected.

After spending much of this week in the 70s, highs for the weekend beyond the storms are forecast in the lower 60s and upper 50s.

Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun
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