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Category: Severe Weather

Preposterous…

| 12:27 pm July 18, 2014

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64F at Haleyville, 75F at Birmingham and 78F at Anniston on July 18th.

Preposterous, right?

Not on this July 18th as clouds are thick and showers and increasing across Central Alabama.

An upper low over northern Louisiana is pumping lots of moisture northward over a warm front that is lying across the Gulf Coast. Light to moderate rain covers much of Mississippi into northwestern Alabama, extending back into Louisiana and Southeast Texas.

At least a couple of rounds of rain will overspread the state this afternoon and tonight. Rainfall amounts don’t look to be too heavy, generally less than an inch, unless heavier rain is able to develop. There could be some thunder, but for much of Central Alabama, it will be limited.

Stronger storms are possible form south of Tuscaloosa back to near New Orleans this afternoon and tonight, but the chance of any severe weather even over southwestern Alabama is small.

Quick Noon Update

| 12:13 pm July 15, 2014

Our cold front is over the northwest corner of Alabama right now. Dewpoints are falling like a rock over Arkansas and western Tenenssee and Kentucky. The dewpoint at Huntsville is 71F, while in Memphis it is 62F and in Branson, MO it is 46F!

The numbers in green are the dewpoints.

Click image to enlarge.

Click image to enlarge.

Clouds are thick along and north of I-20 with some breaks to the south which is allowing instability values to rise above 2000 joules/kg, which is moderately unstable.

Regional radars right now show moderate showers over southern Walker County with lighter showers back through Fayette and Lamar Counties. Other light showers are over southern DeKalb County. Everything is pushing east southeast and will continue to do so.

The main shower and thunderstorm development today will be primarily over southeastern parts of the area in that higher instability, mainly south of a line from Demopolis to Clanton to Wedowee. Some strong storms will form in this region, but only isolated severe weather is expected.

The area outlined in pink on the graphic has a 20% chance of getting a severe thunderstorm watch says the SPC. The yelllow polygons are severe thunderstorm warnings.

To the north, in places like Tuscaloosa, Birmingham, Gadsden and Anniston and points north. The chance of a strong storm is just about gone.

The drier air will work in this afternoon, reaching Birmingham by dark and Montgomery after midnight.

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By morning, lows will be in the 50 across the north and near 60F in the I-20 corridor. There will quite possibly be a couple of 40s in your morning round up of lows tomorrow in places like Bankhead National Forest and Valley Head.

Storms Will Build in the I-59 Corridor

| 11:28 pm July 14, 2014

Showers pushing southeast across West Central and North Central Alabama tonight have started to weaken, pushing a distinct outflow boundary southeastward toward the I-5 corridor.

Click image to enlarge.

Click image to enlarge.

Showers and storms scattered along I-59 from Tuscaloosa to Birmingham to Gadsden will grow and intensify.

A storm in the Tuscaloosa area is already producing heavy rain and lightning.

Already, persistent heavy rains have been occurring in the Etowah and eastern St. Clair County areas into Cherokee County. A flash flood warning is in effect for parts of Etowah County.

Be alert for heavy rains, lightning and gusty winds over the next few hours. The storms are not severe, but we can’t rule out an isolated severe report or warning overnight.

Storms Heavy in the Montgomery Area, More Overnight?

| 5:55 pm July 9, 2014

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Showers and thunderstorms continue across South Central Alabama this afternoon along an outflow boundary/pre-frontal trough that moved into the state overnight.

This activity has been especially heavy in the Montgomery area with torrential rains, gusty winds and tons of lightning. The storms are not severe, but they are still quite dangerous.

The NWS warns that 1 to 3 inches of rain has fallen in the Montgomery, Prattville and Wetumpka area and another 2 inches is poised to fall. The heaviest activity at 5:55 p.m. extends from the Montgomery area up both sides of I-85 toward Notasulga and Tuskegee.

Across the northern part of the area, storms are starting to form from Huntsville back over to the Tupelo area. These storms are associated with the cool front and should continue to develop through the evening hours. They should go downhill after 10 p.m., but storms will be possible through the night as the front approaches.

More storms will develop tomorrow, but it looks like improving conditions should arrive Friday for weekend.

Storms Starting to Fire

| 2:54 pm July 9, 2014
Click image to enlarge.

Click image to enlarge.

Clouds have held tough across much of the northern half of Alabama this morning in the wake of overnight storms that weakened as they pulled into the state.

There has been enough clearing for temperatures to heat into the middle and upper 80s in some spots and this has lent enough energy to the recipe to trigger a developing line of storms from Bibb across northern Chilton, Coosa, Tallapoosa and Chambers Counties. The storm northwest of Rockford is the strongest right now and has triggered a significant weather alert for parts of Coosa County. It will move east northeastward in the direction of Goodwater.

Additional storms will fire through the afternoon and last well into the night as a cool front sinks down from the north.

An isolated storm could become severe this afternoon with damaging winds, but the threat is small.

A Midnight Look at the Alabama Weather Situation

| 12:07 am July 9, 2014

Here is a look at the Alabama Weather Situation at Midnight.

Click image to enlarge.

Click image to enlarge.

Storms that developed today over Arkansas and western Tennessee, well ahead of a long cold front, have drifted southward this evening into Central Alabama, northern Mississippi and Northwestern Alabama.

As they encountered more stable air over the Tennessee Valley over the past couple of hours, they weakened a bit. But they seem to be making a bit of a comeback now in northwestern Alabama, as well as over in Northeast Mississippi. They seem to be taking advantage of some favorable ventilation aloft to hold together.

Lots of lightning right now in places like Florence, Russellville and Moulton. The NWS Huntsville estimated totals may have approached 5-6 inches in parts of eastern Lauderdale County today. 1.53 inches of rain fell in one hour between 10 – 11 p.m. tonight at the Muscle Shoals NWS Alabama Regional Airport. 0.46 inches of that fell in 13 minutes. Here is a radar estimate from the Hytop radar in North Alabama.

Click image to enlarge.

Click image to enlarge.

FLash flooding was reported back in Hardemann and McNairy Counties just to the northwest of the Quad Cities. People were reported trapped in homes in some areas.

No watches or warnings at this hour, and really none are expected overnight. But you can never rule out the threat of a strong storm or two, and perhaps a rogue severe thunderstorm warning through the early morning hours. But the loss of the heating of the day is in our favor and the mesoscale models like the HRRR and the RPM predict that they will continue to weaken as they move slowly southeast.

Showers and storms will be fairly numerous later today (Wednesday) as the front drifts slowly southward. Some of them could be strong to severe. It wlll be interesting to see if the Storm Prediction Center includes parts of Alabama in their standard slight risk severe weather forecast. Their day two probabilities from yesterday were set at 5% for this area, which would not translate to a slight risk if that number holds steady. So probably not, but look out for strong to isolated severe storms later today with damaging winds, flooding rains and some hail possible.

Severe Thunderstorm Watch to the Northwest

| 6:31 pm July 8, 2014
Click image to enlarge.

Click image to enlarge.

Storms across North Alabama have weakened late this afternoon. Showers continue from Jasper to Oneonta to Albertville and Fort Payne.

Rain will begin soon in the Gadsden area.

The only lightning and thunder left is over Northeast Alabama over DeKalb County.

To the northwest, storms over southwestern Tennessee have been severe. And upstream, storms over Arkansas have grown as well. These storms have prompted a severe thunderstorm watch for much of Central Arkansas, northern Mississippi and southwestern Tennessee. We will see if these storms get into the Tennessee Valley of Alabama later tonight. They should be weaker by then.

Strong Storms Across Central Alabama

| 8:23 pm July 2, 2014

Strong thunderstorms are across the middle of Alabama tonight. They are most intense over Bibb, Chilton, Dallas and northwestern Autauga Counties. They are not severe, but be prepared for very intense lightning, gusty winds and torrential rains.

The NWS Birmingham just issued a significant weather alert for several counties including:

NORTHERN AUTAUGA
SOUTHERN SHELBY
NORTHEASTERN PERRY
NORTHEASTERN DALLAS
NORTHWESTERN COOSA
CHILTON
EASTERN BIBB COUNTIES

UNTIL 900 PM CDT.

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The alert is shown in the peach polygon. Communities that will be affected include Montevallo, Maplesville, Calera, Jemsion, Thorsby and Clanton.

There are no warnings at this time.

To the north, there is still some lightning across southern Walker and Fayette Counties.

Back to the southwest, there is still a decent storm over northern Marengo County.

The storms are moving east at about 30 mph.

They are weakening slowly. The Central Alabama storms will hold together for awhile longer, but they will eventually diminish.