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story.lead_photo.caption ( Courtesy of the National Weather Service )

The risk for severe weather has been upgraded for a large portion of Arkansas ahead of possible storms Thursday.

The National Weather Service said a section of the state stretching from Hot Springs up to the northeast corner is at an enhanced risk for severe weather. The area includes Little Rock, Russellville, Jonesboro and Mountain Home.

Most of the rest of the state is at either a slight or marginal risk for severe weather, forecasters said. The main threats will be damaging winds as well as some large hail.

The weather service said a tornado or two could also develop.

A flash flood watch will also be in effect for most of western and northern Arkansas from 1 a.m. to 7 p.m. Thursday, the weather service said.

Most of the state can expect one to three inches total rainfall by Sunday.

EARLIER:

Nearly all but the furthest southeast corner of Arkansas is at a slight risk for severe weather Thursday as a storm system crosses the state, according to the National Weather Service.

Storms and damaging winds will be the main concerns, with a chance for hail, forecasters said. A tornado or two is also possible.

Forecasters warned that flash flooding may occur as well, as one to three total inches of rain is expected through Sunday across the state.

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