HOUSTON -

A strong storm system continues to push east through the nation's midsection, bringing with it the threat for tornadoes, gusty wind, large hail and abundant lightning.

Severe Risk Update 04_17_13

The core of the threat area, where the Storm Prediction Center, in Norman, Okla., has issued a moderate threat area that moves from Oklahoma and Missouri late Wednesday to the Mid-Mississippi Valley on Thursday.  The moderate risk area is where the strongest storms should fire up.  The greatest threat for tornadoes will be  in that area, too.

Severe Risk Update 04_18_13

In Houston, the threat for severe weather on Thursday is much lower.  We're on the very southern fringe of the storm system, well away from the core of atmospheric instability.

That said, we still have the potential for strong storms Thursday afternoon.  The greatest threats to us will be lightning, wind gusts to 60 mph and dime-to-quarter sized hail.  While we can never rule them out entirely, tornadoes will be very unlikely.

The storms should clear out by late afternoon or early evening.  Then, a rush of cold air moves in, scouring out the mugginess.  Low temperatures will be in the 40s Friday and Saturday mornings.  In fact, we may actually set a record LOW (Current record low is 44 F) Saturday morning at George Bush Intercontinental Airport!

Afternoon highs will be near 70 F under sunny skies on Friday and Saturday.