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Associated Press

Posted on December 21, 2013 at 5:05 PM

Updated Saturday, Dec 21 at 5:07 PM

Weather Underground midday recap for Saturday, Dec. 21, 2013

A cold frontal boundary extended from the southern Plains to New England on Saturday, while a ridge of high pressure kept the Southwest clear of wet weather.

Severe thunderstorm warnings, tornado watches and flood warnings were issued across the southern Plains and parts of the lower Mississippi Valley as a maritime tropical air mass interacted with a continental polar air mass. The strongest thunderstorms moved across

eastern Texas, Oklahoma, Louisiana, Mississippi, Arkansas and Tennessee. Corning, Ark., reported a midday total of 4.62 inches of rain, while Walnut Ridge, Ark., reported a midday total of 3.79 inches of rain. Behind the frontal boundary, winter storm warnings were issued across the central Mississippi Valley and into the upper Midwest as cold air triggered widespread freezing rain and snow showers. Marion, Mo., reported a quarter of an inch of freezing rain on Saturday. Meanwhile, showers, freezing rain and snow also spread across the Ohio Valley, the Great Lakes and the Northeast. Metropolis, Ill., reported a midday total of 3.12 inches of rain. The remainder of the Eastern Seaboard avoided wet weather and experienced above normal temperatures for this time of year. Punta Gorda, Fla., recorded a midday high of 87 degrees, while Waycross, Ga., recorded a midday high of 86 degrees.

Light snow showers also fell in the upper portion of the Intermountain West on Saturday due to a cold frontal boundary over the region. Showers also began to push onshore along western Washington as a shortwave of energy approached the region. The Southwest avoided wet weather due to a high pressure system over the eastern Pacific.

Temperatures in the Lower 48 states Saturday have ranged from a morning low of -16 degrees at Rolla, N.D. to a midday high of 87 degrees at Punta Gorda, Fla.

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