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Bill Murray

Bill Murray

Bill Murray is the President of The Weather Factory. He is the site's official weather historian and a weekend forecaster. He also anchors the site's severe weather coverage. Bill Murray is the proud holder of National Weather Association Digital Seal #0001 @wxhistorian

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I Think I Can, I Think I Can…

| 4:56 pm August 23, 2015

danny avn-animated

But I am afraid it probably can’t…

Danny made a bit of a comeback this morning according to satellite pictures, with an expanded circulation and a flare of convection around the center. But he rally was short lived, the short term effect of approaching shear that will eventually tear the storm apart, and the death rattle will begin soon.

Tropical storm warnings are in effect for Antigua, Barbuda, Montserrat, St. Kitts, Nevis, and Anguilla with tropical storm watches for Puerto Rico, the U.S. and British Virgin Islands and the rest of the northern Leeward Islands.

Danny will move across the islands of Guadeloupe and Antigua late tonight into Monday then across southern parts of Hispaniola by Tuesday night.

This should effectively knock the stuffing out of the little hurricane that could. It is yet to be seen whether the plucky little storm will be able to regenerate later this week as it moves a long the North Coast of Cuba. The smart money is on no for now.

BUT: Having said that, watch the system behind Danny. It will likely become Tropical Storm Erika this week, on a similar trajectory to Danny. The European does ramp this back up into a powerful storm as it moves through the Bahamas around September 1, but recurve it between the U.S. East Coast and Bermuda early that week.

Free Fall Preview This Week!

| 2:53 pm August 23, 2015


The upper level trough that was responsible for the showers and storms of late yesterday through early this morning is now over Alabama and some drier air is filtering in with it. Slight cooler air aloft is allowing stratocumulus clouds to form in the base of the trough, sort of like you would see in spring.

The upper level disturbance that brought the shake, rattle and roll to areas north of I-20 during the pre-dawn hours is over western South Carolina and southeastern Georgia at this hour. There have been a couple of severe thunderstorm warnings there, but no watches are anticipated.

Temperatures are in the middle 80s, with a few upper 80s where sunshine has been able to take more of a hold.

Temperatures will be the big story in coming days as a cool front brings us a real fall preview this week. That front will slice through the area tomorrow. A few showers and storms could develop along the front Monday afternoon. If they do manage to form, they could be strong. But they will be limited in number and coverage. Highs tomorrow will look a lot like today, mostly upper 80s to lower 90s.

Could I interest you in middle 80s for highs and lows near 60F, with several spots in the upper 50s for the middle of the work week? Well, you won’t have to twist my arm, since that is what is on the way weather wise across Central Alabama. Rain will be non-existent through the coming weekend. Great weather for high school football’s first big weekend and the fabulous Sidewalk Film Festival in downtown Birmingham next weekend. Don’t miss this world class event!

More Good News About Our State from the Alabama NewsCenter

| 2:04 pm August 21, 2015

Here are some of our favorite stories from our partners at Alabama NewsCenter from the past week, August 14 – 20.

Can’t Miss Alabama: Concerts, festivals, fishing and more – Here’s your handy guide to weekend activities across Alabama.

8-21-2015 1-37-44 PM

Deontay Wilder looks to make boxing big business in Alabama – Fight aims to top $1.5 million economic impact of one in June

8-21-2015 1-07-07 PM deontay

Tomberlin’s Take: Kamtek $530 million investment ends “the question” – Auto supplier evidence of new economic development vigor in the Magic City

8-21-2015 1-14-40 PM

Noah Galloway honored by state broadcasters – The veteran has become a household name thanks to a national television stint, but he proudly calls Alabama home.

8-21-2015 1-17-19 PM noah galloway

100 dishes to eat in Alabama before you die: Ranelli’s Deli – Seriously, these are some of the best foods this state has to offer.

8-21-2015 1-25-59 PM ranelli

Synchronized fireflies give glow and show in Vestavia Hills yard – Insects unusual outside of Smoky Mountains, experts say.

8-21-2015 1-29-14 PM fireflies

Using technology and creativity in innovative ways in the classroom – “We must prepare students for the jobs of the future.” Mark Coleman, Brighter Minds panelist.

8-21-2015 1-31-28 PM

Linking childhood behavior with workforce development – “Tune in to your child, not at the frequency you think they ought to be at.” Ellen Abell, Brighter Minds panelist.

8-21-2015 1-33-35 PM

Plant Greene County celebrates 50 years of serving West Alabama – Reflecting on five decades of faithful service to this West Alabama community.

8-21-2015 1-35-25 PM

Mercedes supplier SMP to open $150 million Alabama facility, creating 650 jobs – New 700,000-square-foot plant to start construction this year.

8-21-2015 1-39-58 PM

Alabama Bright Lights: Welcome to Rainbow Omega – A place for those with developmental disabilities to live with dignity and love.

8-21-2015 1-45-31 PM

Better preparations and lessons learned after storms – Major utilities are coming together to be better prepared the next time a major storm strikes.

8-21-2015 1-47-31 PM

Power to Play grant program accepting applications – Power To Play returns today for its second year of helping increase high school athletics participation.

8-21-2015 1-49-25 PM

APSO back-to-school efforts aid students across the state – “When you see the kids’ excitement, it’s worth everything.” Marcy Brown, APSO volunteer.
8-21-2015 1-51-48 PM

Festival of Hope brought message, music to Birmingham – Franklin Graham featured at three-day religious event.

8-21-2015 1-55-06 PM

A place to be recognized – The A.G. Gaston Boys & Girls Club instructs Birmingham-area youths in academic success, healthy lifestyles and character and leadership development.

8-21-2015 1-57-04 PM

Chess gets students’ minds on board as school starts back – Back-2-School Scholastics tournament draws more than 60 young participants.

8-21-2015 1-58-35 PM


Danny Now a Hurricane

| 10:20 am August 20, 2015

danny 9 avn_lalo-animated

Danny was upgraded to hurricane status on the 10 a.m. advisory from the NHC.

Here are the Fast Facts:
LOCATION…12.5N 44.8W

The system is very small, which makes it vulnerable to unfavorable environmental conditions. It is expected to remain in an area of low shear, which is favorable for intensification, so it might strengthen even further. The current forecast calls for a peak intensity of 85 mph.

There is lots of dry air to the north, so the double edged sword is that intensification might act to pull in some of this drier air to the cyclone, which would weaken it.

Here is the official 5-day forecast track for Danny:


There is good agreement between two major global models that the system will impact the northern Lesser Antilles, including the Leeward Islands, Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico. On this track, it would impact Hispaniola as well. That mountainous island tends to knock the stuffing out of tropical cyclones, and a small one would be especially vulnerable.

In fact, the cyclone is forecast to degenerate into a tropical wave by the two global models.

A change in track to the north or south could change this way of thinking.

It is too early to know if Danny can hold together and impact the Gulf of Mexico, but of course, any storm in the Caribbean gets our attention here in the region. We will have plenty of time to watch it, as it is at least 7-8 days from being a threat to the Gulf or South Florida.

Strong Storms Over West Alabama

| 5:40 pm August 18, 2015


Strong thunderstorms are over parts of Fayette and northern Tuscaloosa Counties at this hour.

They have prompted a Significant Weather Alert for parts of those counties into southwestern Walker County.

Winds could reach 40 mph with these storms in addition to heavy rain and frequent lightning.

These storms should reach western Jefferson County around 7 p.m.

Storms in Clay and Chickasaw Counties in northeastern Mississippi have prompted Severe Thunderstorm Warnings. If these hold together, they will impact northern Lamar and Marion Counties starting as early as 6:45 p.m.

Over South Central Alabama, showers and storms are widespread in the US-80 Corridor from Choctaw County through Marengo, Wilcox, Lowndes, Montgomery, Elmore, Macon and Tallapoosa Counties. A Significant Weather Alert was just issued for Sumter and Marengo Counties.

Tropical Depression Four Forms

| 10:50 am August 18, 2015

td four tue 10 aavn-animated

Tropical Depression Four has formed in the Atlantic a little more than 1,600 miles east of the Lesser Antilles.

The depression is moving just north of west at 13 mph.

Top winds are 35 mph according to satellite estimates and the central pressure is estimated at 1009 mb.

The system will likely become Tropical Storm Danny tonight or early Wednesday. It should become a hurricane by Friday.

But the system will weaken as it approaches the islands over the weekend. It may well get into the eastern Caribbean, but it will encounter more unfavorable conditions and could weaken further.

By late in the weekend, the Bermuda high should start to weaken and a trough will develop over the East Coast. I don’t think this trough will be strong enough to recurve Danny if the tropical cyclone holds together. It could deflect Danny into South Florida. Or it could build back in time to keep Danny steaming on a westward course across the Caribbean. We will wait and see!