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For The Associated Press

Weather Underground midday recap for Thursday, July 17, 2014

A low pressure system drifted across the southern Plains on Thursday, while monsoonal thunderstorms lingered over the Southwest.

A strong area of low pressure inched eastward over the southern Plains on Thursday. As warm, humid air fed into this system, strong to severe thunderstorms developed across the nationÂ's midsection. These thunderstorms brought heavy rain to several states, as flash flood watches were issued across northeast Texas, southeast Oklahoma and western Arkansas. Decatur, Texas, reported a midday total of 4.68 inches of rain, while Denton, Texas, reported a midday total of 4.23 inches of rain. Gusty winds also accompanied these thunderstorms, as Fort Worth, Texas, recorded wind speeds of 34 mph. High pressure over the northern Plains kept conditions clear across the north central portion of the country.

A separate high pressure system moved over the Ohio Valley on Thursday, which brought dry conditions to much of the eastern third of the country. Scattered showers lingered over parts of the Northeast due to a low pressure system over southeast Canada. To the south, sea breeze induced thunderstorms developed over Florida. Tampa, Fla., reported a midday total of 1.93 inches of rain, while West Palm Beach, Fla., recorded wind speeds of 46 mph.

Out west, scattered showers and thunderstorms moved across parts of the Great Basin and the Southwest. High pressure over the eastern Pacific kept the remainder of the West Coast clear of wet weather.

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Temperatures in the Lower 48 states Thursday have ranged from a morning low of 35 degrees at W. Yellowstone, Mont. to a midday high of 102 degrees at Blythe, Calif.

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