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Tornadoes, thunderstorms loom again over much of US

Severe thunderstorms will bring rain and hail and possibly more tornados to parts of the Plains and Midwest.  The Weather Channel's Chris Warren emphasizes the importance of taking these warnings seriously.

A wide swath of the heartland – stretching from Texas to the Great Plains and up into the lower Great Lakes – was being threatened by monstrous thunderstorms Tuesday evening, kicking off what is expected to be a week of severe weather.

Tornado warnings were sent out in at least four states, with one massive twister already on the ground in Kansas – nearly one week after neighboring Oklahoma was devastated by a deadly twister.

Buildings in the town of Corning, Kan., were badly damaged Tuesday, but there were reportedly no injuries, according to Weather.com.

Flash flood warnings were issued for towns in northeast Kansas battered by as much as nine inches of rain, according to the National Weather Service.

Nebraska, Iowa, and Missouri were also bracing for dangerous conditions, including giant hail, fierce winds, and potential isolated tornados, the National Weather Service said.

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Visitors watch as fast water crashes through the quartzite rocks at Falls Park in Sioux Falls, S.D., on Monday. Flash-flooding remains a threat Tuesday in some parts of the country.

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“The tornado threat seems highest from west-central Illinois west to Kansas, then southwest into west Oklahoma and northwest Texas,” Weather Channel meteorologist Kevin Roth warned.

Roth added that Oklahoma City - whose suburbs were devastated by tornadoes just over a week ago - was in the line of fire and could see more tornadoes Wednesday.

Meanwhile, thunderstorms producing 60 mph wind gusts and half-dollar-size hail bore down on parts of Colorado and Kansas on Tuesday morning, with the National Weather Service warning residents to take cover.

Parts of Interstate 70 in western Colorado were included in the warning area.

Those warnings came just an hour after nearly identical forecasts for parts of Missouri, with the weather service office in St. Louis saying damage to vehicles, crops, trees and housing exteriors was expected.

A flash-flood watch was in effect for northeast and central Missouri and parts of central Illinois, and a flood warning was issued for the La Moine River at Ripley, Mo.

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A monster tornado hit Moore, Okla., Monday afternoon, leaving at least 24 dead.

The storm threat was predicted to continue through the week, with severe storms likely Wednesday and Thursday across the Plains and upper Midwest, Roth said.

The potential for dangerous tornadoes is considered highest on Wednesday from southeastern Nebraska to north-central Texas.

Then on Thursday, tornado outbreaks are likely from the upper Mississippi Valley and eastern Dakotas south to central Oklahoma, Roth said.

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