Posted May 23, 2018 8:39 p.m. EDT
A clear sky will prevail Thursday across the Northeast, the Midwest and the Tennessee Valley along with plenty of sunshine and pleasantly warm conditions. The Southeast will be much more unsettled. From the Carolinas through Alabama and Florida, heavy storms and drenching downpours will exacerbate the high risk of flooding.
Showers and thunderstorms will dot the Mississippi Valley and parts of the central Plains. It will be warm and humid across the area.
Severe storms will stretch across the Upper Midwest, along the northern edge of the steamy air. These afternoon storms may produce heavy downpours, damaging winds and hail.
Intense heat is expected for a large part of the central United States, with temperatures projected to exceed 90 from southern Minnesota to Texas, southern Arizona, New Mexico and California. The threat of wildfires will persist in the Southwest as drought conditions and strong sunshine continue.
The Northwest will be warm and mainly dry, aside from some late-day storms in high-elevation spots. The coast should be pleasantly cool.
FOCUS: Heat Wave in the Northern Plains
The northern Plains and parts of the Midwest can expect a heat wave from Friday through Sunday. Afternoon temperatures are expected to reach the low 90s across the region, and the humidity will make it feel even hotter.