Thursday was the fourth straight day of severe weather throughout much of the U.S., a period during which 38 tornadoes were reported across six states -- 18 in Kansas, five each in Oklahoma and Nebraska and Iowa, four in Missouri and one in Arkansas.
The severe weather is calming down from earlier in the week, and the system is sliding off to the east where it may bring harsh conditions today.
As the system moves off into southern Canada, cooler air behind it will clash with the record-breaking heat in the Northeast, bringing a risk of severe storms for 25 million Americans from the Eastern Great Lakes to New England. Widespread damaging winds to 80 mph, scattered hail, and brief tornadoes are all possible. A Severe Thunderstorm Watch is in effect through this evening from Pittsburgh to Syracuse. A Tornado Watch is in effect through 10 P.M. tonight for northern New York and Vermont.
Storms will move across the Appalachians during the early evening, reaching cities from Washington, D.C., up through Boston after sunset, although storms are not expected to be as strong once they reach the coast.
Record highs from Thursday:
Today will be another hot day in the Northeast, with high temperatures from Virginia to New Jersey again passing 90 degrees. New York City and Hartford, however, are unlikely to top 90 again, decreasing the chance of an official heat wave there.
Behind the cold front, temperatures will slowly cool off, with much of the Northeast seeing conditions 20 to 30 degrees cooler on Sunday than on Friday. Meanwhile, a push of warm air in the Southwest means an excessive heat watch has been issued for Phoenix, which will near triple digits -- as will Las Vegas by Sunday.