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Category: Alabama’s Weather

More Storms Expected

| 6:59 am July 5, 2015

A quick look at the radar this morning showed much of the action occurring across South Alabama where the boundary sagged last night. The flash flood watch issued yesterday was allowed to expire this morning. Additional showers are expected to develop later today in the warmth of the afternoon.

BMX

At 500 millibars, the small upper low was located over the eastern half of Tennessee as it slowly migrates northeastward reducing its influence on our weather pattern. As the low gets absorbed into the primary westerly flow and moves into the Mid-Atlantic States, the pattern across the Southeast US will be replaced by gradual ridging as the Bermuda high builds across the southern US from the western Atlantic. This upper air pattern should favor a return to more diurnally driven showers and storms for the week ahead as temperatures also climb back into the lower 90s.

With the westerlies located along the northern tier of the US, another cold front will approach the Ohio and Tennessee River valleys at mid-week but is expected to wash out before we can see any kind of air mass change. This keep the moist air mass in place and keeps scattered showers and storms in the forecast for much of the week ahead.

The Atlantic Basin remains especially quiet as the South Atlantic remains covered by a large mass of dry Saharan air. There was a little more action in the Eastern Pacific where a tropical depression is likely to form early next week well out in the Pacific.

The SPC in Norman, OK, has continued a marginal risk of severe storms along the Gulf and Southeast US coasts for today with an enhanced risk of severe storms centered mainly on South Dakota later in the day. They have only a marginal risk area ahead of that front for Monday or Day 2.

Headed to the beach? About 6 to 8 hours of sunshine daily for the Central Gulf Coast heading into next week, from Dauphin Island to Panama City Beach. Storms will be more numerous today, but each day in the week ahead there will be a decent chance for a passing storm from time to time, fairly typical with the daily sea breeze effect. Highs on the immediate coast will remain in the mid to upper 80s, with lower 90s inland. Sea water yesterday afternoon at Perdido Pass at Orange Beach was reported to be 81 degrees.

Looking out into voodoo country, the GFS continues to advertise the potential for the trough to stay a feature across the eastern US into Week 2. While the ridge builds and decays, the presence of the overall trough across the eastern third of the country is certainly a positive sign for keeping any extreme heat at bay.

James Spann will be back with the next edition of the Weather Xtreme Video first thing on Monday morning. Check back here often for updates on the Central Alabama weather.

-Brian-

Afternoon Update

| 2:05 pm July 4, 2015

After the very active start to the day, we have see a lull in the action and actually have see some decent sunshine across portions of the state. The breaks in the cloud cover, as seen below, are allowing instability to build and we are once again seeing convection blossom across portions of the Southeast.

7-4-2015 1-48-19 PM

Under these puffy white clouds, we are seeing numerous showers and storms. These storms are producing a lot of lightning, gusty winds, intense rainfall, and possibly even some hail. A quick look at the radar shows a cluster of storms over West Alabama and they are tracking towards the east. It looks as though the bulk of the activity will be staying just to the south of Interstate 20 corridor.

7-4-2015 2-00-23 PM

Click image to enlarge.

For the rest of today we will continue to see showers and storms develop across Central Alabama and these could affect some of those fireworks shows, but hopefully we will see enough breaks in the action that will allow the shows to go on. Heading into Sunday, expect more of the same across the state. A stall frontal boundary to our north, and a warm and moist air mass will allow for numerous showers and storms to develop once again tomorrow. These storms will produce loads of lightning, but flooding could be the greatest concern. A reminder, much of Central Alabama remains under a flash flood watch through Sunday morning.

7-4-2015 2-01-35 PM

Watch May Be Issued

| 11:46 am July 4, 2015

AREAS AFFECTED…PORTIONS OF CENTRAL/SRN MS…EXTREME W-CENTRAL AL

CONCERNING…SEVERE POTENTIAL…WATCH POSSIBLE

PROBABILITY OF WATCH ISSUANCE…40 PERCENT

SUMMARY…THUNDERSTORMS MAY POSE A RISK FOR ISOLATED DAMAGING GUSTS
THROUGH MID AFTERNOON. TRENDS IN THUNDERSTORM COVERAGE WILL BE
MONITORED AND A WATCH IS POSSIBLE PRIOR TO 18Z.

7-4-2015 11-44-08 AM

DISCUSSION…LATEST RADAR AND VISIBLE SATELLITE IMAGERY SHOW AN
EAST-WEST ORIENTED OUTFLOW BOUNDARY BISECTING THE STATE OF
MISSISSIPPI…WITH RECENT MOTION TO THE SOUTH AT AROUND 10 MPH. A
WEAKENING UPPER LEVEL SHORTWAVE TROUGH WAS LOCATED ACROSS THE
LOWER/MID MISSISSIPPI RIVER VALLEY. THUNDERSTORMS WERE SLOWLY
INTENSIFYING ALONG THE LEADING EDGE OF A CONVECTIVELY-GENERATED COLD
POOL OVER WEST-CENTRAL MS…AND ALSO IN THE VICINITY OF THE E-W
BOUNDARY FROM NEAR JACKSON TO JUST NORTH OF MERIDIAN. AMPLE HEATING
OF THE MOIST AIR MASS SOUTH OF THE OUTFLOW BOUNDARY WILL RESULT IN A
MODERATE/STRONG SURFACE-BASED INSTABILITY…AND 25-35 KTS OF WSW
FLOW IN THE 2-4 KM AGL LAYER IS FAVORABLY ALIGNED WITH OVERALL STORM
MOTIONS. A RISK FOR DAMAGING WINDS WILL EXIST THROUGH THIS AFTERNOON
WITH THE EASTWARD-MOVING LINE OF THUNDERSTORMS GENERALLY NEAR AND
SOUTH OF THE I-20 CORRIDOR…AND AN ISOLATED THREAT WILL EXIST WITH
THE STRONGER STORMS DEVELOPING FARTHER EAST INTO EAST-CENTRAL MS/FAR
W-CENTRAL AL.

RADAR TRENDS WILL BE MONITORED AND A WW IS POSSIBLE PRIOR TO 18Z.

Cool Pic of the Day

| 10:16 am July 4, 2015

Here is a cool graphic of the current visible satellite image with radar echoes superimposed.

7-4-2015 10-02-46 AM

That delineated line is the outflow sinking south.

You can see clearing out behind it. The southward impetus of the outflow and the low level southerly surface winds are blowing off the tops of the clouds, resulting in the striations.

Additional storms are already firing back in western Mississippi, Louisiana and Arkansas. They are the result of another wind maximum moving through the upper trough just to our northwest that results in diffluence or spreading apart aloft, which creates lift at the surface!

Flooding Scenes from Shades Creek

| 9:36 am July 4, 2015

Serious flooding continues across parts of the Birmingham Metro despite the fact that the rain has ended.

these photos are from the Mountain Brook Parkway, courtesy of @Davi29P who apparently lives in the Old Mill House.

Click to enlarge montage

Click to enlarge montage

Water rescues have been ongoing at the Rue Maison and Rue Deville apartments on Shades Creek at Lakeshore and Green Springs.

Record Rainfall for the Date

| 8:33 am July 4, 2015

2015-07-04_08-26-02

3.12 inches of rain has fallen at the Birmingham Airport so far today through 8:15 a.m.

This is a new record rainfall for July 4th in the Magic City.

The former record (2.10″) was recorded in the first year we have reliable records, 1895!

That same year, the high was only 80F. We might not see 80F today. It we stay at 76F or cooler, it will tie or beat the record cool high for Independence Day. A few breaks in the clouds should prevent that from happening, but it could be a top ten coolest Fourth of July at Birmingham. And it certainly is the wettest!