PROMO Graphic - Severe Thunderstorm WATCH - Chris Sorensen

Southeast Colorado under thunderstorm watch Saturday

A severe thunderstorm watch is in effect.
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Chris Sorensen

The National Weather Service Storm Prediction Center in Normal, Oklahoma, has issued a thunderstorm watch for southeast and east central Colorado, which is expected to be in effect until 8:00 p.m. Saturday.

At 1:30 p.m., radar showed a line of thunderstorm over the southern Interstate 25 corridor moving east to the southeast plains. A severe thunderstorm warning covered much of southern Pueblo County. That storm could produce quarter-size hail, along with wind gusts to 60 miles per hour.

Current Radar Loop

Much of western Elbert County is under a flash flood warning until 5:00 p.m. Saturday. Radar showed thunderstorms producing heavy rain in the area. Between one-half and one inch of rain had already fallen, an amount that may double over the course of the afternoon.

Earlier in the day, southern Kit Carson and northern Cheyenne counties were under a flood warning, which expired around midday. Late Friday, between one and three inches of rain fell in the area, adding to precipitation that has impacted the area over the past week.

Across southeast Colorado Saturday, there is a risk of large hail, damaging winds, and isolated tornadoes, along with the potential for flash flooding. The greatest risk for two inch or greater hail and isolated tornadoes focuses on Baca, Las Animas, Prowers, Bent, Otero, and Pueblo counties. Multiple tornado warnings were issued in that area Friday evening.

Colorado Counties included in Saturday’s thunderstorm watch include Baca, Bent, Cheyenne Crowley, Elbert, El Paso, Huerfano, Kiowa, Kit Carson, Las Animas, Lincoln, Otero, Prowers, and Pueblo.

Rain during May and June has significantly improved drought conditions in eastern Colorado. Overall, 93 percent of the state is free from drought conditions. Southern Baca County continues to show a small area moderate drought in this week’s report from the National Drought Mitigation Center. One year ago, 82 percent of the state was in some level of drought, with 16 percent of state in extreme or exceptional conditions.