Author Archive: 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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When In Drought, Leave It Out

| September 4, 2016 @ 2:29 pm

9-4-2016 2-26-54 PM

It is always fun to watch the visible satellite light up on summer days as the cumulus field develops. That happened on cue this morning as the convective temperature was reached.

The best moisture is south and west of US-78/280 this afternoon, and that is where the shower development has been so far.

Further south, radars have been busy along the Gulf Coast, where a surface trough has triggered showers and storms all morning.

All of the activity will start weakening around sunset and will be gone by 9 p.m.

Temperatures range from 87F at Calera to 89F at Tuscaloosa and Anniston to 90F at the Birmingham International Airport.

Highs will only rise a degree or two more in most spots. Tuscaloosa has actually reached 91F just before 1 p.m.

The coming week will feature more heat, with high temperatures running some 5-10 degrees above normal, between 90-94F. Showers and storms will be hard to find.

The drought isn’t helping. One forecasting adage pertaining to rain chances is, “When in drought, leave it out.” Unfortunately, we will be leaving them out this week.

Serving Up a Hearty Helping of Good News from Alabama NewsCenter

| September 2, 2016 @ 11:19 am

From Jerusalem to Jacksonville, from Pie Lab to Pepper Place, from trivia to Zika and from the Edge of Chaos to key lime milkshakes, there was plenty of Alabama good news this week and our friends at Alabama NewsCenter brought it all together in one place.

Jerusalem’s biggest Crimson Tide fan ready for Alabama football season

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Jacksonville State wants to return to title game to win it this year

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Summertime keeps Alabama Power linemen busy

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Pie Lab is an Alabama Maker turning a slice of the Black Belt into an international destination

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Alabama Power chef showcases induction cooking at Pepper Place

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Makers Village at Pepper Place hosts Alabama Chanin, extending into holiday season 

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Buy Alabama’s Best campaign to benefit state businesses and Children’s Hospital 

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Acre Restaurant in Auburn creates its culinary identity from its surroundings

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Habitat for Humanity Birmingham Builders Blitz completes more than a dozen homes

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Building BLOX: Alabama architecture firm makes mark on health care

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National Trivia League finals crowns an Alabama champ

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The Edge of Chaos pushes the boundaries of innovation – an Alabama Bright Light

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Alabama Innovation Awards honor success stories across state

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Alabama Launchpad hands out Innovation Awards to companies, individuals

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Birmingham’s Southern Research uses innovative strategies to target Zika

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CBS and Verne get ready for some SEC football

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Students Get on Board at the University of Alabama

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Alabama State wants a faster start to winning in 2016

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Troy needs young players to emerge quickly in 2016

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Huntingdon Hawks hope to ‘handle it right’ for a strong 2016 football season

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Birmingham Fashion Week showcasing city along with couture

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Canadian-based Canfor establishing U.S. headquarters in Mobile

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Plastipak expanding Birmingham facility with $10M investment

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Alabama Power, ESG to make Maxwell Air Force Base more energy efficient

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Silky smooth Key Lime Milkshake makes list of 100 Dishes to Eat in Alabama Before You Die

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Spice up Labor Day with fun events from Can’t Miss Alabama

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Birmingham year-to-date home sales through July up 7 percent over 2015

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Mobile home sales through July up 4.4 percent over last year

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Montgomery home sales through July up 2 percent from last year

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Rocket City home sales through July up 10.5 percent over same period last year

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Marshall County July home sales rose 5 percent over last July

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Lake Martin July residential sales up from June sales

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Wiregrass year-to-date home sales through July up 7 percent over last year

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Baldwin County residential sales through July up slightly compared to last year

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Gadsden year-to-date home sales through July up 16 percent over last year

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Gulf Coast condo sales rose 3 percent in July over same period last year

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Athens/Limestone County home sales through July up significantly over last year

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Phenix City July home sales up 11 percent over last July

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Tropics Take Center Stage

| August 28, 2016 @ 12:54 pm

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It’s a warm and humid last Sunday of August across Central Alabama. Temperatures are approaching 90F at the noon hour, heading toward highs between 91F-94F. With dewpoints in the lower 70s, heat index values are in the middle and upper 90s.

Skies are partly cloudy and regional radars are mostly quiet. High pressure at the surface and aloft is pretty much putting the kibosh on any showers and storms. A few isolated ones will form over a few lucky spots and continue into the mid-evening hours.

If you find yourself under one, count your lucky stars, then watch out for lightning!

QUICK CHECK ON THE TROPICS

…Gaston is a 105 mph hurricane east of Bermuda. It is drifting WNW but should recurve before affecting the island.

…99L is passing through the Florida Straits this afternoon. A circulation center is evident south of the Florida Keys. Key West NAS has a NE wind at 14 gusting 23 mph. The models believe 99L will become a tropical depression over the southern Gulf of Mexico. The GFS moves it out into the Middle Gulf by late Tuesday before turning it northeast toward the West Coast of the Florida Peninsula by next weekend. That would have little impact on Alabama’s weather, just some rough surf and showers and storms along the Gulf Coast. The European run from last night also depicts a move toward the Big Bend area of Florida. The Canadian does carry it to the Mobile/Pensacola area by Thursday night. It is too early to tell what specific course might occur or how strong it will become. Suffice to say, we will be watching.

LONG TRACK CAPE VERDE STORM IN THE CARDS?

The models are predicting a long track hurricane will move across the Atlantic over the next two weeks. This is the GFS output for Tuesday morning the 13th.
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Output has consistently carried it to the mid-Atlantic Coast, as far south as Jacksonville or up into Virginia. But the morning run of the GFS brings it across the Caribbean and into the GUlf of Mexico. We will also have to pay attention to that possibility.

Innovation, Inspiration & Not-To-Miss Events – Captured By Our Alabama NewsCenter Friends

| August 26, 2016 @ 10:51 am

It was a week of innovation and inspiration in Alabama this week and our friends at Alabama NewsCenter captured it all.  Here is a look back at the good news of the past seven days, as well as a look forward at this weekend’s can’t miss events across our state, including 10 movies (and more!) not to miss at this weekend’s Birmingham Sidewalk Film Festival.

Portrait of Alabama football legend Kenny Stabler unveiled in Tuscaloosa

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Special international model to kick off Birmingham Fashion Week

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Spending the night in search for ghosts in Tuscaloosa’s Drish House

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Ernst & Young: Alabama ranks in Top 5 for investment

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Innovation Week: Birmingham tech sector offers entrepreneurs ‘room to run’

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Velocity Accelerator offers Birmingham ‘boot camp’ for start-ups at Innovation Depot

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1 Million Cups of Coffee makes its Alabama debut for Innovation Week

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Dr. Josh Klapow: Dealing with back-to- school and other transition stressors

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Maybach 6 shows what’s possible when Mercedes goes extravagantly electric

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NASA wants to bring enterprise to the Space Station

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UAB study finds potential treatment target for Guillain-Barré syndrome

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10 movies and more not to miss at this weekend’s Birmingham Sidewalk Film Festival

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‘Boyhood’ star Ellar Coltrane brings ‘By the River’ to Birmingham’s Sidewalk Film Festival

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Southern Research hires Jim Pannucci to lead infectious disease research

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Huntsville targets Dream Chaser landings as Sierra Nevada ties grow

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Austal USA hosts USNS Yuma christening in Mobile

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BJCC master plan opts for open-air stadium over a dome

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Hear from the Alabama running back with two 99-yard touchdown runs in one game

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Bitter playoff loss fuels Tuskegee football team for 2016 season

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Samford aims in 2016 to build on wins from last season

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University of South Alabama looks to bounce back after rebuilding year

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Alabama A&M aims to make noise in the SWAC in 2016

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Cotton Clark has fond memories of playing for ‘the Bear’ and Crimson Tide

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UAB athletes seek victory in both sports and community service

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East River Trading created a business from whole cloth in Alabama’s Wiregrass

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Ensley Renaissance Festival: Business owners say rebirth is more than hype

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Filmmakers hit the Sidewalk, dragons hit the water and UFOs take to the skies in Can’t Miss Alabama

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Crawfish Pie from Faunsdale Bar & Grill one of 100 Dishes to Eat in Alabama Before You Die

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Alabama year-to- date home sales through July up 6 percent over last year

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Mobile 2Q home sales up 8 percent over same period in 2015

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Lee County home sales through July up 9 percent over last year

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Morgan County home sales through July up 3 percent over last year

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Calhoun County year-to- date home sales through July up 21 percent

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Cullman July home sales up from June

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Flash Flood Warning for Cullman County, Including City of Cullman

| August 19, 2016 @ 8:54 pm

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2-4 inches of rain has fallen across much of Cullman County this evening.

Heavy thunderstorms are about to move over the City of Cullman now.

One hour rainfall rates between 1.5-2 inches are possible.

Flooding will be likely.

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN HUNTSVILLE ALABAMA HAS ISSUED A

* FLASH FLOOD WARNING FOR…
NORTHWESTERN CULLMAN COUNTY IN NORTH CENTRAL ALABAMA…

* UNTIL 1145 PM CDT

* AT 845 PM CDT…DOPPLER RADAR INDICATED THUNDERSTORMS PRODUCING
HEAVY RAIN FROM GOOD HOPE AND CULLMAN WEST TO THE WINSTON COUNTY
LINE. UP TO TWO INCHES OF RAIN HAVE ALREADY FALLEN IN THESE AREAS
WITH AN ADDITIONAL 1 TO 3 INCHES POSSIBLE. FLASH FLOODING IS
EXPECTED TO BEGIN SHORTLY.

* SOME LOCATIONS THAT WILL EXPERIENCE FLOODING INCLUDE…
CULLMAN…GOOD HOPE…BALDWIN…VINEMONT…WEST POINT…LOGAN…
CRANE HILL…JONES CHAPEL…PHELAN AND SMITH LAKE.

Reaching for the Stars – Alabama NewsCenter Brings Us More Good News Stories!

| August 19, 2016 @ 10:22 am

Crimson Tide and the floods, Birminghamians visit Birmingham, Alabama actresses take New York and kayak fishing in Bayou La Batre helped make this a fun week from our partners at Alabama NewsCenter.  Here are some of our favorite good news stories from this week.

Crimson Tide calls on Alabama to help flood victims in Louisiana

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Video highlights of British couple’s sweeping Birmingham visit

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British couple wraps up a Magic City madcap day that makes up for mistake

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BHM not BHX: Birmingham is buzzing with the couple from the other Birmingham

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Birmingham opens up to British couple during make-up vacation

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Two Birmingham actresses making debut at New York’s 54 Below

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Alabama Power unveils new Amazing Alabama economic development website

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Alabama’s Bayou La Batre hosts kayak fishing tournament

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Hyundai Motor discussing partnerships with Google

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Space Camp becomes its own international space station in Alabama

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Southern Research taps industry veteran to lead drug development in Birmingham

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New guidelines published for treating kidney stones

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Collector’s passion helps preserve, tell the story of Negro League baseball players

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University of West Alabama football enters 2016 with one-more- win mentality

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Experience at key positions feeds optimism for 2016 Birmingham-Southern football

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North Alabama hopes for same roar from new Lions on this year’s football team

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Olympic champion Jennifer Chandler dives into her history every day

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ConventionSouth magazine ranks Mobile high as a Hot Spot

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Birmingham residents adore their furry friends

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Can’t Miss Alabama beats the heat with brides, bowhunters, aliens and lots of music

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Mango Salsa Chicken Salad tops list of 100 Dishes to Eat in Alabama this week

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Alabama Business Charitable Trust provides Efficiency Forward grants

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Myers to talk Birmingham’s World Games 2021 at IREM Summit Aug. 26

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New Alabama coastal homeowners insurance shopping guide can be a great tool

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Lake Martin July waterfront home sales outpace five-year average for the month

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Scattered Strong Summertime Storms Across Central Alabama

| August 18, 2016 @ 2:20 pm

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A strong thunderstorm is over northern Jefferson County at this time. It is strongest from just north of downtown up through Tarrant, Fultondale, Gardendale and Mount Olive.

Nothing severe at this time, just lots of heavy rain, wind gusts to 40 mph and dangerous lightning.

John Talbot reports a large tree and power pole down in Fultondale. Cottonwood Dr and Hangle Dr.

Elsewhere, strong storms are in St. Clair County approaching Pell City.

There has been some heavy rain across Etowah and St. Clair Counties, where a flood advisory is in effect.

A strong storm is approaching Piedmont.

Storms over the Tennessee Valley have prompted a flash flood warning for Limestone and Morgan Counties.

Storms Pushing Up Through West Alabama; Lightning, 40 mph Gusts

| August 14, 2016 @ 3:06 pm

8-14-2016 3-01-52 PM

A line of showers and storms is lifting northward through West Alabama this afternoon. At 3 p.m., it extends from Uniontown to Eutaw to Carollton to Amory MS.

It is moving north at 30 mph.

Lots of lightning and heavy rain as well as wind gusts to 40 mph accompanying the storms.

The storms will arrive in Tuscaloosa around 4 p.m.

The activity should stay mainly west of Jefferson County.

Showers and Storms Mostly West of I-65 Today…

| August 14, 2016 @ 12:33 pm

Clouds continue to break up early this afternoon across Central Alabama. Temperatures are warming through the 80s right now. The mercury reached 86F at BHM just before noon.

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Convective temperatures off this morning’s balloon sounding at BMX showed that showers and storms would start forming at about 85F. That is underway, with scattered showers across western Alabama from Lamar and Fayette Counties down through Pickens, Tuscaloosa, Sumter, Greene and Marengo Counties. These storms will continue to grow through the afternoon.

In addition, an increasing area of showers and storms over southeastern Mississippi and southwestern Alabama will push northward through the afternoon hours. This activity should affect only the counties that borer Mississippi, perhaps as far east eventually as Bibb and Jefferson Counties by 5-6 p.m.

Otherwise, only isolated showers and storms are expected east of I-65 today.

THE HEAT IS ON: While Alabama is enjoying a little respite from our recent heat, it’s a different story in the Mid Atlantic and Northeast. Heat advisories, excessive heat watches and excessive heat warnings extend all the way from North Carolina to New Hampshire today. It was 95F in New York City with a heat index of 102F at noon and 92F in Boston with a heat index of 99F.

STATE OF DISASTER: That is what the headline on The Advocate in Baton Rouge is today. The Amite River is cresting at a record 46.2 feet at Denham Springs, LA, besting the previous record by nearly five feet. Flood stage is 29 feet. Downtown Denham Springs is completely under water. Over 1,000 people have been evacuated in Livingston Parish because of the extensive flooding along the Amite and Tickfaw Rivers. Interstate 12 is closed and over 1500 motorists are stranded. State police are having to drop supplies to them from helicopters.

In South Baton Rouge, homes are underwater and much of the LSU campus is flooded. Two people were reported dead in St. Helena Parish. There is extensive flooding in Youngsville and Broussard in Lafayette Parish. Baton Rouge received 19.24 inches of rain between Wednesday The flooding is tremendous in Louisiana after over 20 inches of rain fell in many areas.

46 mph Wind Gust at the Birmingham Airport

| August 13, 2016 @ 4:15 pm

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Showers and thunderstorms moving northward across Central Alabama are producing brief heavy rains, gusty winds and some lightning.

They are not severe, but did produce a wind gust to 46 mph at the Birmingham international Airport at 3:49 p.m.

Power is out in Hoover and parts of Vestavia.

At 4 p.m., the strongest storms were over northeastern Jefferson County from north of Garedndale to Pinson and over eastern Alabama over Coosa County near Rockford.

Everything is moving north at about 30 mph in the circulation around the low over Central Louisiana.

The flooding is devastating over southeastern Louisiana. Baton Rouge now has recorded their wettest year in history through August 12th with 61.47 inches. They have picked up 19.10 inches over the past two and a half days.