Archive for December 26th, 2011
I promised a couple of thunderclaps on my radio forecasts this morning, and tonight, I am proud to say that we have doubled what we promised. There have been four lightning strikes in the past 30 minutes over Northwest Alabama. There were two near Berry and two near Winfield. No charge for the extra bonus lightning strikes tonight.
But the main news tonight is the good old fashioned soaker that much of Central Alabama will receive overnight. It is raining on nearly every inch of I-20 tonight from west of Cuba, Alabama to the Mississippi River at Vicksburg.
Rain is now heavy over western Alabama counties from Sumter all the way up to Franklin, stretching eastward into Winston and Walker Counties.
1.14 so far at Coker says Ronald Hughes. 0.68 at Lake View in northeastern Tuscaloosa County says Richard Viola.
NWS radar from Jackson says that 2-4 inches of rain has fallen today across much of Central Mississippi with some 4-5 inch amounts possible in some spots. One of those is between Louisiville and Macon in eastern Mississippi.
So, most everyone across Central Alabama should see well over one inch of rain before morning. We don’t expect any flooding problems, but be careful if you have to be out and about driving late tonight or early tomorrow morning.
WeatherBrains Episode 309 is now online (December 26, 2011). If you are crazy about weather, this is THE netcast audio program for you!
There’s only one way to end the year like we’ve had in the US. And that’s with Greg Carbin, Warning Coordination Meteorologist at NOAA’s National Centers for Environmental Prediction, Storm Prediction Center (SPC) in Norman, Oklahoma. Since 1996, Greg has performed as a severe weather outlook forecaster, fire weather forecaster, mesoscale meteorologist and lead forecaster at the SPC. Prior to starting his career with the National Weather Service (NWS) in Charlotte, North Carolina, in 1993, Greg worked in the private sector in New York and Vermont. He earned a B.S. degree in Meteorology from Lyndon State College in 1985 and has completed some graduate course work at the University of Oklahoma while an employee of the NWS.
Other discussions in this weekly podcast include topics like:
Our email bag gets a bit of attention even on a short schedule of episodes.
From The Weather Center:
WeatherBrains 101: Our 101 segment for the last show of 2011 takes a brief look back at the year. Happy Holidays and Happy New Year!!
TWIWH: Bill Murray looks back at the week of December 27th. The week featured a historic snowfall in the Southeast US that affected a football game.
Listener Surveys: Okay, we continue to drive this topic into the ground, but we really do like to hear from you. Many thanks to everyone who has taken the time to fill out the Listener Survey. The survey takes just a minute or two to complete and provides us with an opportunity to learn where you are and hear your thoughts and comments on the show. Click here to take the survey.
Web Sites from Episode 309:
Greg Carbin – spc dot wcm at noaa dot gov
Picks of the Week:
JB Elliott – Snow Cover Animation
Bill Murray – Warning: A Call to Action
Brian Peters – Earth Science Picture of the Day
Kevin Selle – National High/Low Temperatures
James Spann – Three Stooges Official Trailer
The WeatherBrains crew includes your host, James Spann, plus other notable geeks like JB Elliott, Kevin Selle, Bill Murray, and Brian Peters. They bring together a wealth of weather knowledge and experience for another fascinating netcast about weather.
If you are lucky, you got some sunshine this morning, but clouds have already thickened ahead of our next system. Highs this afternoon will reach into the 50s across the area today.
Rain was really building to the west of Alabama this morning, ahead of developing surface low pressure over southern Arkansas and northern Louisiana. Flood watches are in effect for much of Central and southern Mississippi and there have even been a couple of flash flood warnings out of Jackson and New Orleans.
This rain was already edging into western Alabama just before 11 a.m., with heavy rain reported at Meridian. The low will strengthen and move northeast, and the rain will become heavy at times, with some embedded thunder across Central Alabama.
Instability will be limited, so no strong storms are expected over North or central Alabama. There could be some along the Gulf Coast though. There could be some local flooding overnight across parts of our area, thanks to the heavy rain and recent rainfall. The rain will continue through the overnight hours with lows dropping into the middle and upper 40s.
RAIN ENDING TUESDAY: Tuesday promises to be a raw day, with a brisk westerly wind and temperatures holding nearly steady all day in the upper 40s. That westerly wind will average 10-18 mph, making it feel quite chilly. The rain should b ein the prcoess of leaving eastern Alabama during the morning hours, but everyone could deal with a few spits and sputters of rain during the morning as well. Skies should begin to clear during the afternoon, but we all know how long it can take things to clear out behind these winter frontal systems.
SUNSHINE BY WEDNESDAY: We are reasonably confident that you will see a good supply of sunshine by Wednesday however. After morning lows in the lower to middle 30s, highs will probably only make the lower 50s.
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After a primarily dry morning, it looks like the rest of the day will be fairly wet as run moves into Central Alabama from the southwest coming across Mississippi. Temperatures have been steady for much of the morning, so I do not expect to see highs get much above the lower and middle 50s for most locations here.
As the closed low over the Southwest US kicks out across the Southeast US, a surface low will form in the Northwest Gulf and track northeastward across Alabama. This should generate rain for the evening and early morning hours of Tuesday before the rain finally moves out around midday on Tuesday as the upper low comes by in the form of an open trough as it weakens somewhat. I do not expect to see severe weather around Central Alabama with this system. The threat for severe weather should remain offshore in the northern Gulf area. As the system moves out on Tuesday, the threat for severe weather moves to the Southeast US coast centered on the South Carolina coast.
Tuesday is also expected to be a chilly day with little change in temperature. I think the temperatures on Tuesday will stay in the lower 50s. By Wednesday, sunshine does return but that day will also be a bit chilly with a morning low around 32 and a high around 52. But as the upper flow goes zonal, I expect to see our temperatures moderate slowly for the rest of the week with the high by Friday around 60 to 62 degrees.
We will see a couple of short waves traverse the upper flow, but they should have very little if any moisture to work with, so while we might see some clouds, I do not expect to see any rain. That could change on January 1, 2012, with a fairly strong short wave that might be able to bring some moisture with it. But even then, the rainfall is not expected to be of much significance. And we should dry out rapidly for January 2nd.
Voodoo country continues to present an interesting scenario around the 6th. The GFS has remained consistent in presenting something of a winter event for the Southeast US. The exact location has been varying, but the idea of a winter event has now been on the table for three days. Confidence has grown as a result of the consistency of the forecast, but I still wouldn’t be jumping on it just yet.
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The Weather Xtreme Videos will be somewhat irregular this week since I am handling the morning weather duties on ABC 3340 this week. But I will try to get one posted each morning. Enjoy the day and Godspeed.
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