The Storm Prediction Center has issued a tornado watch for parts of eastern Kansas, western Missouri, and extreme northeastern Oklahoma this afternoon in anticipation of the development of severe thunderstorms capable of producing a few tornadoes.

A dry line — a sharp dividing line between dry and moist air — located over parts of Kansas and Missouri is beginning to produce thunderstorms along and to the east of the boundary (shown below), and the SPC expects this convection will develop into supercells through the afternoon.

Due to the elevated Convective Available Potential Energy (CAPE — fuel for thunderstorms) and wind shear in the region where the thunderstorms are expected to develop, any storm that forms carries the risk of producing hail larger than quarters and possibly a tornado.

If you live in the Kansas City metro, Topeka, Joplin, or the Tulsa area, you know the drill — keep a close eye on the weather today as conditions can and will change rapidly.

[Images via SimuAWIPS and GOES]