While weather officials are still determining exactly what Pettis County residents can expect, severe weather is predicted for Wednesday afternoon.
Sedalia-Pettis County Emergency Management Agency Director Dave Clippert told the Democrat Monday afternoon there is a 30 percent chance of some type of severe weather Wednesday in the Pettis County area, which includes the possibility of isolated tornadoes.
“By the time we get to Tuesday night, Wednesday morning, it will break out into what (the National Weather Service) will expect — a hail event, tornadoes or high wind,” he said. “I don’t expect it to be a high percentage for tornadoes, but until the National Weather Service rules it out, we can’t either.”
Clippert said he doesn’t expect widespread tornadoes, but he does expect high winds and maybe some hail.
“We’re just keeping an eye on things; information will get updated, more narrowed down into what we think is going to happen,” he said. “We will follow National Weather Service, what they’re saying. What I’m most concerned about, the risk of this starts to kick in 6 to 7 in the morning — when kids are getting ready to go to school possibly we will get severe weather. It may not come until much later in the day, but by the time they get out of school, it could kick back in again.”
NWS has reported the highest risk for Central Missouri is from 2 to 6 p.m. Wednesday. Clippert said there is a 5 percent chance for tornadoes, slightly higher than Pettis County has seen in a few months, but he added that straight-line winds are the main weather event NWS is predicting.
As Wednesday is Veterans Day, Clippert advised citizens to keep an eye on weather forecasts to help them decide if plans need to be adjusted. The annual parade in downtown Sedalia at 3:30 p.m. is right in the middle of the high-risk time frame, but Clippert said the 11 a.m. ceremony at the Pettis County Courthouse should be able to proceed as planned.
More information will be distributed by NWS and SPCEMA over the next two days as more information is made available.
“The risk area has moved around a little bit since Saturday. There’s a good possibility it could move to the east side of the state and take us out of it, or it could stay,” Clippert said. “We just have to keep an eye on it.”
Nicole Cooke can be reached at 660-826-1000 ext. 1482 or @NicoleRCooke.