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Much of Kansas can expect a saturated Saturday

Heavy rain Friday morning caused localized flooding of low-lying streets and intersections around Wichita.
Heavy rain Friday morning caused localized flooding of low-lying streets and intersections around Wichita. The Wichita Eagle

A rumbling thunderstorm soaked Wichita as the workday got underway Friday.

Consider it a prelude for what’s in store for much of Kansas on Saturday. The Wichita area could see rain overnight and shortly after dawn – and severe weather if the sun comes out in the afternoon, forecasters say.

Central and northern Kansas could see isolated storms fire up, too, with rain, hail and even isolated tornadoes possible.

Those thunderstorms are expected to converge later in the day to a line of thunderstorms moving east across the state, forecasters say.

Friday morning’s multiple rounds of moisture added up to just .06 of an inch in Wichita, National Weather Service meteorologist Jaclyn Ritzman said. Saturday’s storms, on the other hand, could bring up to an inch.

“Some locations could pick up more than that,” particularly if thunderstorms line up and move slowly over the same geographic areas, Ritzman said.

If the sky clears by early afternoon in the Wichita area and sunshine heats up the humid air for a few hours, she said, the chances for severe weather in the metropolitan area increase significantly.

The main threats in that scenario would be strong winds and hail as large as golf balls, she said.

“We can’t really rule out a tornado at this point” if the atmosphere becomes unstable enough, Ritzman said.

Sunday will offer a reprieve from storms, with sunny skies and highs in the low 80s.

Reach Stan Finger at 316-268-6437 or sfinger@wichitaeagle.com. Follow him on Twitter: @StanFinger.

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