Have several ways to get Oklahoma severe weather information this weekend, National Weather Service meteorologist says

Rick Smith, an Oklahoma meteorologist with National Weather Service, is encouraging the public — including people attending events throughout the weekend — to closely monitor Oklahoma severe weather information
by Bryan Painter Modified: April 25, 2014 at 11:48 pm •  Published: April 25, 2014

Art, music and sports are among numerous events expected to draw thousands outside Saturday and Sunday in central Oklahoma.

And although forecasts from the National Weather Service have scaled back the threat of tornadoes, the possibility remains, as does the potential for large hail and damaging winds.

With that, Rick Smith, warning coordination meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Norman, says that while the public should not be fearful, people should be watchful.

Smith said that while people may have plans in case severe weather occurs while they are at home, they also need to know what they will do if they are at an outdoor event or activity.

“You have to know what you’re going to do in every situation,” Smith said. “It doesn’t require being obsessive about it, it just requires thinking for two minutes, ‘OK, if there’s a storm here at the ballpark, what am I going to do? Where am I going to go?’”

Isolated or widely scattered thunderstorms initially may develop late Saturday afternoon and into the early evening hours across portions of western north Texas and southwestern and western Oklahoma, according to the National Weather Service.

The storms could then move northeast and east Saturday night and into early Sunday across portions of central Oklahoma. The threat of severe weather is expected to shift eastward during the day Sunday to east of Interstate 35 by the afternoon.

The storms could bring large hail up to baseball size and damaging winds over 70 mph. The potential for tornadoes remains, including through the night, Smith said.

“I think late in the afternoon on Saturday out in far western Oklahoma is where things are going to get kicked off,” he said. “I think for here in central Oklahoma and the Oklahoma City metro area, most of our concerns are going to happen after dark and even into the early morning hours on Sunday.”

Plans for marathon

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by Bryan Painter
Assistant Local Editor
Bryan Painter, assistant local editor, has 31 years’ experience in journalism, including 22 years with the state's largest newspaper, The Oklahoman. In that time he has covered such events as the April 19, 1995 bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah...
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