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Flooding rains, tornadoes possible in southern Minnesota on Tuesday

Tuesday is setting up to be a wild day in weather.

A heavy rainfall event is set to take place Tuesday across much of southeast Minnesota, where copious amounts of precipitation could lead to flash flooding. With that, the Weather Prediction Center has placed a good chunk of Minnesota, including the Twin Cities, in a moderate risk for excessive rainfall. 

Areas shaded in red are in the moderate risk, with the yellow representing locations under a slight risk for excessive rain totals. 

Some areas could get more than five inches of rain, with widespread 3-5 inch totals likely within the moderate risk zone.

"Anticipate a swath of 3-5" of rain...with isolated 5-8" totals appearing probable. Localized significant flash flooding is certainly a possibility with this setup within and near the Moderate Risk area," says the Weather Prediction Center

The heaviest rain is expected to develop this afternoon until tapering off after dark. 

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A flash flood watch has been issued for all of southeast Minnesota, including some of the southeast suburbs of the metro area. Locations within the watch are "most likely" to be hit with three-plus inches of rain, the Twin Cities office of the National Weather Service says.  

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Areas of far southeast Minnesota, northeast Iowa and southern Wisconsin have been pounded by heavy rain over the past week. Many areas are already saturated with 4-8 inches of rain, which is why today's heavy rain threat is "not a situation to be taken lightly," says the NWS office in La Crosse. 

Here's a look at one simulated future radar, showing what could happen between 8 a.m. Tuesday and 5 a.m. Wednesday. 

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Tornadoes possible in southern Minnesota

Meanwhile, severe storms could develop south of where the heaviest band of rain sets up. Plenty of wind shear associated with this storm system could lead to a couple of tornadoes, according to the Storm Prediction Center

Areas shaded in yellow in the map below stand the highest chances of experience severe storms. 

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According to the La Crosse NWS forecast, severe storm chances will be greatest from about 3 p.m. until 9 p.m. 

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