Severe thunderstorms will break out across parts of the southern Plains Thursday afternoon as a storm tracks into Oklahoma.

Scattered, intense thunderstorms will initially form over eastern Oklahoma and northeastern Texas during the afternoon. These particular cells will be capable of producing large hail and tornadoes as they track to the east.

By Thursday night, the thunderstorms will likely merge into one large squall line, which will race eastward through southern Missouri, Arkansas and northern Louisiana. The greatest threat from the squall line will be damaging wind gusts in excess of 70 mph.

Heavy rainfall will greatly reduce visibility for travelers and cause ponding on roadways with poor drainage.

Story by AccuWeather.com Senior Meteorologist Brett Anderson.