Rainy week ahead for southern Oklahoma, severe weather expected Friday

Sierra Rains

Southern Oklahomans will need to break out their umbrellas and rain boots again this week with a chance for showers and thunderstorms nearly every day beginning Wednesday.

Jennifer Thompson, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Norman, said the area will see a more active weather pattern for at least the next seven days.

“We’re starting to get into a seasonal pattern where storms start to develop and usually it’s around the second half of May, around this time, when we start to see more thunderstorms,” Thompson said.

Most days are expected to produce a good amount of rainfall, but the threat for severe weather likely won’t arise in the southern Oklahoma area until Friday.

“There’s a marginal risk for severe thunderstorms so large hail and damaging winds will be the main threats if any storms develop on Friday,” Thompson said.

Tornadoes are a risk with any storm and can develop at any time of the year. However, Thompson said the National Weather Service is not expecting any significant chances for tornadoes on Friday.

Individuals are advised to be prepared for the chance of severe weather at any time. Officials recommend having a plan in place before severe weather hits.

Many public storm shelters have remained open during the pandemic. However, for those without access to a public shelter, officials recommend taking shelter in the innermost part of your residence — typically a closet or interior bathroom with no windows on the lowest level of the building.

Individuals can check with their community shelter managers to ensure the shelter will still be open. Having a weather radio or television handy is also important in case cell phone coverage goes out.

“Everyone needs to have at least two forms of communication to receive alerts in case one goes out and they should be good to go,” Thompson said.