NORMAN — Central Oklahoma is among areas of the state that could experience tornadoes Tuesday, according to the National Weather Service, Norman Forecast Office.
The potential for severe weather should be followed closely Tuesday by Oklahoma residents, said Rick Smith, warning coordination meteorologist with the weather service in Norman.
“It's kind of a one-two punch tomorrow with the storms,” Smith said Monday. “The dryline is going to be sitting out there in western Oklahoma, and then we've got the cold front coming down from the northwest.”
If storms start along that dryline before the cold front arrives, “those would be the ones with the biggest chance for tornadoes and the big hail,” Smith said.
When the cold front comes down, it's probably going to be a big line of storms that sweeps through.
“The number of storms and warnings will be greater with the cold front,” Smith said, “but the impacts will be worse if they are isolated along the dryline. If they can develop tomorrow afternoon before the front gets here, then that will be what we're most concerned about, and that would be the Oklahoma City metro, too.”
Smith encourages Oklahomans to have a severe weather safety plan. That includes having multiple ways to monitor the weather throughout the day because “it has the potential to be something that you don't want to be surprised by.”
In 2011, there were 50 confirmed tornadoes in the month of April in Oklahoma, the most since official tornado records began in 1950. However, in 2012, that record for April was broken with 53 recorded tornadoes.