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Central US eyes back-to-back days of powerful storms, tornadoes and hail

By Robert Shackelford, Elizabeth Wolfe, Dalia Faheid and Mary Gilbert, CNN

(CNN) — Unrelenting rounds of severe thunderstorms will keep a large portion of the central United States at risk of destructive wind gusts, damaging hail and dangerous tornadoes this week.

Millions in the region must remain weather aware Monday and Tuesday after powerful storms battered parts of the region Sunday with damaging tornadoes, baseball-sized hail and winds up to 100 mph.

At least 13 tornadoes were reported across Kansas, Colorado and Oklahoma on Sunday, according to the Storm Prediction Center. Two tornadoes struck Oklahoma, one of which triggered a rare tornado emergency in Custer City and damaged 10 to 15 homes in Custer County and another hit the western portions of Oklahoma City.

Two people were injured in Blaine County, Oklahoma, when their mobile home was destroyed and a local nursing home also reported damage, according to state and county officials. Custer County also reported two people with injuries, the state emergency management office said.

Wind gusts as strong as 100 mph and baseball-sized hail knocked out power to tens of thousands of homes and businesses in Kansas Sunday night. More than 30,000 homes and businesses remained without power Monday morning, according to

Significant storm damage in Harvey County, Kansas – about 25 miles north of Wichita – prompted a local disaster declaration, the county said on X Sunday night.

Additional dangerous storms Monday, Tuesday

Severe thunderstorms will bubble to life later Monday afternoon or early Monday evening in parts of Colorado and Wyoming and track east through the night to impact Nebraska, Iowa and Minnesota.

Any storm could deliver damaging winds, hail and even a tornado.

Some of the strongest storms could fire up in parts of northeastern Colorado and western Nebraska where a Level 3 of 5 risk of severe thunderstorms is in place, according to the Storm Prediction Center.

Though not directly in the storm’s bullseye, cities including Chicago, Milwaukee, Detroit, Minneapolis and St. Louis are also at risk of severe weather.

Severe thunderstorm risks will expand Tuesday across a large portion of the central US from Texas to the Midwest and Great Lakes. More than 16 million people in the Midwest are under a Level 3 of 5 or greater risk of severe thunderstorms Tuesday.

Tuesday’s storms could produce a significant swath of damaging wind gusts, along with large hail and EF2 or stronger tornadoes. Widespread, “intense” damaging wind gusts are most likely late Tuesday within the Level 4 of 5 risk of severe thunderstorms area including southern Iowa and northwestern Illinois, according to the SPC.

Tornadoes, some of which could be strong, are possible in much of Iowa. Smaller parts of Wisconsin, Illinois and Missouri could also face dangerous tornadoes.

Sweltering heat in Houston amid days-long outages

Houston area residents who are still picking up the pieces from Thursday’s storms will contend with a much different danger: sweltering heat. Winds up to 100 mph and a tornado in Harris County killed at least eight people, damaged skyscrapers, toppled trees, downed critical power infrastructure, caused a sewage spill and made roads impassable.

The heat index, which measures what the body actually feels, could hit triple-digits this week, raising health risks from weather’s deadliest threat.

Power remains out for more than 200,000 homes and business across Harris County as of Monday afternoon, according to With increasingly high heat and humidity, those residents will have to cope with heat indices from the 90s Monday into the 100s Tuesday and Wednesday without air conditioning. Authorities have warned restoring power to all customers could take weeks.

“Widespread power outages continue across the Houston metro area. Please use safety precautions when using generators,” the National Weather Service in Houston said. “Know the symptoms of heat exhaustion/stroke. Don’t overdo yourself during the cleanup process.”

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CNN’s Robert Shackelford, Gene Norman and Sara Tonks contributed to this report.

Article Topic Follows: cnn-weather/environment

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