Pella Chronicle

April 8, 2013

Forecasts say wet week ahead


DES MOINES — After a dry start to the month, April is about to turn wet.

Forecasters are saying southeast Iowa could see at least 1.5 inches of rain in the next three days. Thunderstorms are forecast to move into southeast Iowa overnight, the beginning of a rainy pattern that should last several days. The next dry day may be Friday.

Some of those storms could be strong to severe. The Storm Prediction Center puts southern Iowa in the slight risk category for Tuesday, with a 15 percent chance of severe weather. The system moves east on Wednesday, but is still close enough to warrant attention.

The greater risk for severe storms is to the south.

If severe weather forms, it will mark the first time in 2013 it has reached into Iowa. That's not unusual. Severe weather early in the year is most frequent in "Dixie Alley," a swath of southern states that remain warm enough for storms to feed off moisture from the Gulf of Mexico. Stronger storms move north as winter comes to an end.