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Archive for December 5th, 2012

Cold Air Returns Early Next Week

| 3:07 pm December 5, 2012

An all new edition of the ABC 33/40 Weather Xtreme video is available in the player on the right sidebar of the blog. You can subscribe to the Weather Xtreme video on iTunes by clicking here.

THIS AFTERNOON: Under a mostly cloudy sky, there a few patches of scattered light rain across Alabama, but many places are dry. Temperatures remain mild, with most communities in the mid to upper 60s. To the south, Montgomery has soared into the upper 70s again today with some sun at times through the clouds. The light rain will end this evening as the upper low to the south moves on to the east.

TOMORROW THROUGH SATURDAY: These three days will be very mild, and mostly dry. The air will be rather moist, meaning cloudy periods, but the chance of a shower for any one given location is very small since there is no real trigger for rain. Afternoon highs will be around 70 tomorrow, but will back down a bit Friday due to cold air damming, or cold air draining into the state from the east. I figure highs near the Georgia border will be in the upper 50s Friday, but to the west low 70s are likely over the western counties of the state. Then, on Saturday, everybody should enjoy a high near 70. The chance of any one spot getting wet on these three days is only in the 10 to 20 percent range, and barely worth mentioning in the forecast.

STRONG COLD FRONT EARLY MONDAY: A dynamic weather system will bring the chance of strong storms to Alabama late Sunday night and early Monday. We figure the main window for showers and storms will come from about 12:00 midnight Sunday through 9:00 a.m. Monday. While the tornado threat looks rather low, the long squall line will have the potential to bring strong winds, maybe even damaging winds in spots. Instability values will be somewhat limited thanks to the early morning arrival, so hopefully that will keep things in check. And, the fact that the storms will be linear, and not cellular, should keep the tornado threat small. Rain amounts of 1/2 to 1 inch are likely.

COLD AIR COMES BACK: I get the idea our high Monday will be reached early in the morning. I expect temperatures to fall Monday, and there is a good chance we reach the 40s by mid to late afternoon with an icy north wind. Then, as the sky clears Monday night, we should drop well below freezing by daybreak Tuesday with most places winding up in the 20s.

We will keep an eye on a disturbance riding along the Gulf Coast; some GFS runs have suggested that might bring beneficial rain to the state by Wednesday night or Thursday, but the 12Z run is weaker, farther south, and shows little rain up this way. One way or another temperatures will moderate a bit, and there won’t be any winter weather issues with that feature if it does become a factor.

THE LAND OF VOODOO: Still strong evidence of a pattern change which will open the door for much colder weather over the latter half of December. Of course, in Alabama, it never “stays cold”, but I get the idea temperatures here will be below average as we celebrate Christmas, and maybe the New Year. See the Weather Xtreme video for the graphics and details.

WEATHER BRAINS: Don’t forget you can listen to our weekly 90 minute netcast anytime on the web, or on iTunes. This is the show all about weather featuring many familiar voices, including our meteorologists here at ABC 33/40.

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I had a great time today seeing the kids at Duck Springs Elementary School, and Glencoe Middle School in Etowah County… they will be on the Pepsi KIDCAM tomorrow evening on ABC 33/40 News. Tonight I will be live at Applebees on Highway 150 in Hoover as we get our Toys for Tots campaign in high gear… come see us if you have time and bring a new, unwrapped toy. The next Weather Xtreme video will be posted here by 7:00 a.m. tomorrow…

Small Quake North of Birmingham

| 1:11 pm December 5, 2012

Late update… USGS has deleted this event after a review by a seismologist… Seems like it was related to mining.

Steve Jones… Our quake expert…

A small magnitude 2.5 earthquake was registered by the USGS earlier this morning at 16:01:05 UTC (10:01:05 am CST), in Alabama, east of the city of Jasper in extreme northern Jefferson County, at a location approximately 103 km (64 mi) from Huntsville. The quake focus was located at a depth of 1 km (0.6 mi). There have been no reports of damages or injuries from the quake.

In Huntsville, the initial P (pressure) seismic body wave arrival was seen approximately 20 seconds after the quake occurred, and the S (shear) body waves began to arrive at approximately +31 seconds. The slower-traveling surface waves began to arrive about 36 seconds after the quake occurred, peaking with a maximum vertical ground movement of approximately 651 nanometers (nm) seen at the AlabamaQuake seismic station.

The local seismogram and earthquake epicenter location map have been posted at the AlabamaQuake website (http://alabamaquake.com) on the “Huntsville Seismograms” and “Recent Earthquake Maps” pages, and have also been attached to this message.

Please let me know if you have any questions or comments by posting an update on the AlabamaQuake discussion blog at http://www.facebook.com/alabamaquake.

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Big Changes Next Week

| 5:49 am December 5, 2012

An all new edition of the ABC 33/40 Weather Xtreme video is available in the player on the right sidebar of the blog. You can subscribe to the Weather Xtreme video on iTunes by clicking here.

LIGHT RAIN AT TIMES TODAY: A strong impulse over Louisiana will keep clouds and showers over Alabama today. Additional rain amounts should be light, generally under 1/4 inch for most places. Temperatures will remain mild with a high between 65 and 69 degrees.

TOMORROW AND FRIDAY: While a moist airmass will remain in place, there is really no trigger for rain, and we believe most of the state will be dry on these two days. Any showers will be few and far between, and the sun should peek out at times. The high tomorrow will be near 70; Friday’s high will depend on where you are. The wedge, or cold air damming, will bring some cooler air into far East Alabama, and it looks like a case where communities near the Georgia border over Cherokee, Cleburne, and Randolph Counties high see a high in the upper 50s, while the western half of the state will be in the low 70s.

MILD WEEKEND: We project highs in the low 70s Saturday and Sunday, but you need to enjoy that because things begin to change in a big way next week. I sure can’t rule out a shower or two both days, but the showers should be pretty widely spaced, and I think much of the weekend will be dry with a mix of sun and clouds both days. Clouds should begin to thicken Sunday afternoon ahead of a strong cold front.

FLIP TO COLDER: Global models are much faster with the Polar front early next week. The 06Z GFS now moves the front through here by late morning Monday, and hints the main risk of showers and storms will come from about midnight Sunday night to 9:00 a.m. Monday. The European is a touch slower, with the bulk of the showers and storms during the day Monday. While strong storms are certainly possible along the front, the good news is that we don’t see a strong surface low north of here to back the surface winds around to the southeast, meaning a tornado threat probably won’t materialize. But, gusty winds with the storms are a good possibility, and rain amounts of 1/2 to 1 inch are likely.

If you buy into the GFS solution, temperatures would fall into the 40s Monday with an icy north wind, and we will be below freezing by early Tuesday.

Later in the week a strong impulse along the Gulf Coast brings more rain into Alabama on Thursday, but temperatures will modify enough for just rain and no winter weather issues.

CHRISTMAS COLD? Still seeing strong signs of more cold air moving into Alabama in the December 15-22 time frame. While we have enjoyed very mild weather in recent weeks, the air has been brutally cold up north, and I sure believe temperatures here will be below average as we head into Christmas week. Still way too early to determine how cold. And, remember, we had a White Christmas two years ago, and that is just about a generational weather event in Alabama. Don’t get your hopes up.

Take some time to watch the Weather Xtreme video for the graphics and details.

WEATHER BRAINS: Don’t forget you can listen to our weekly 90 minute netcast anytime on the web, or on iTunes. This is the show all about weather featuring many familiar voices, including our meteorologists here at ABC 33/40.

CONNECT: You can find me on all of the major social networks…

Facebook
Twitter
Google Plus

I will be doing two weather programs today in Etowah County… Duck Springs Elementary… and then Glencoe Middle School. Look for the next Weather Xtreme video here by 4:00 this afternoon; enjoy the day!