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Archive for February 16th, 2013

A Very Cold Night

| 6:19 pm February 16, 2013

Tonight could be one of the coldest nights of the winter with many areas being in the lower to mid 20s. I would not be surprised to see some upper teens in some of our colder spots across North Central Alabama. The average temperature for the Birmingham metro will be around 25. The patchy clouds and snow flakes we saw this afternoon will are clearing out, and the winds are going calm. This will be ideal radiational cooling conditions and temperatures will fall rapidly this evening and overnight. A quick look at the NAM model forecast for tomorrow morning, we can expect to see widespread 20s across Alabama. Most of Alabama, even down on the Gulf Coast will wake up tomorrow with temperatures at or below freezing. Tomorrow’s weather will be better than today’s, as the winds will be lighter and temperatures should warm up to near 50 in Central Alabama.

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Flurries Are Flying

| 3:05 pm February 16, 2013

Twitter is lighting up like a Christmas tree with reports of snow flurries across the northern half of Alabama…

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Forcing associated with an intense upper trough is squeezing out the light snow, despite a dry atmosphere…

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No accumulation is expected, and the flurries will end this evening as the trough axis moves on to the east.

Expect a low between 20 and 25 early tomorrow…

A Cold Afternoon

| 2:01 pm February 16, 2013

Winter has returned to the Southeast as very cold air has moved back in across much of the region. To make things worse, a strong north-northwest wind continues to blow making conditions more unpleasant. Most locations are in the 40s across north central Alabama with winds sustained at 10-20 mph; some gust are over 25 mph. Bundle up if you are heading out this afternoon and tonight. The winds should subside this evening and it will be a very cold night across the region tonight. Most places will see lows in the lower to mid 20s.
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Mostly sunny skies this afternoon, but don’t let the sunshine fool you, it is cold outside. We are seeing some cloud streaks, showing very cold air in the region. Clouds should be out of here overnight, and temperatures will fall rapidly tonight, expect a very cold night on tap in the Southeast. Conditions will begin to improve after a cold start and temperatures will make it into the 50s tomorrow. Expect another sunny day, but with much lighter winds.

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NWS Open House

| 9:12 am February 16, 2013

With the weather a bit on the chilly side today along with a stiff northwesterly wind, you might want to do something indoors. So how about feeding your weather addiction with a trip to the Birmingham NWS Open House? The open house marks the 20th year of operations at the Shelby County Airport plus the kickoff to Severe Weather Awareness Week in Alabama which is next week. Simply get on I-65 and take exit 234 to the airport and the NWS facility.

I was working for the NWS when the building was constructed at the Shelby County Airport, and it is a great facility to see where a lot of weather forecasting takes place.

NWS Open House

NWS Open House

-Brian-

Much Colder Today

| 7:33 am February 16, 2013

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.

Look for a northwesterly wind today ushering in much colder air with the afternoon high today expected to be about 20 degrees colder than yesterday. With a biting wind and cold air, it might be a great day to take in the open house at the National Weather Service office at the Shelby County Airport from 11 am to 5 pm.

Sunday morning will be very nippy as morning lows fall into the 20s. I think there is some potential for those typically colder spots to get into the teens. But in good Southeastern fashion, we should recover quickly with an afternoon high on Sunday back into the lower 50s.

The next system approaches on Monday afternoon with clouds increasing Monday but the rain should hold off until Monday evening and into the early morning hours of Tuesday. Both the GFS and European (ECMWF) in good agreement on this and the two models stay in reasonably good agreement all the way out through the seven days.

The rain moves out on Tuesday by midday while the clouds are likely to stick around. An upper ridge promises to make Hump Day a nice one with a small cool down as lows dip to near freezing while the afternoon highs climb into the lower 50s.

Moisture will return rapidly into East Texas and Oklahoma on Wednesday as the next system takes shape over the southern Rockies. This is the one for which the SPC has outlooked a potential for severe weather from Northwest Louisiana into West Central Alabama. And with a fast flow, that system moves quickly into the Great Lakes. The problem will be that the ridge over the Gulf holds strong so the upper flow goes southwesterly which means the front stalls out across the Southeast, probably across South Alabama. That means we will see some unsettled weather into the weekend along the Gulf Coast if this position for the frontal system is correct. The GFS and ECMWF suggest that Central Alabama will be out of the rain, but we are verging on voodoo country, so we’ll stick with improving weather for us for now, but we’ll need to watch future model runs for better positions on the front as we get closer to the event.

Rainfall over the next five days will be between about half and one inch for Central Alabama.

Looking into week 2, the GFS promises a continuation of an active pattern with new weather systems to deal with around the 25th, 27th, and March 1st into 2nd.

And you can follow news and weather updates from ABC 33/40 on Twitter here. Stay in the know by following the whole gang – here’s the list…

James Spann Charles Daniel Ashley Brand
J. B. Elliott Bill Murray Brian Peters
E-Warn (AL wx watches/warnings)

STORM ALERT 2013: Our annual severe weather awareness tour across Alabama continues through February. We will share lessons learned after the April 27, 2011, generational tornado event, along with some other amazing weather stories. Learn how to keep your family safe during severe weather plus you have a chance to win some cool prizes as well. The remaining Storm Alert tour date are…

February 21 Clanton – Jeff State Performing Arts Center
February 26 Ohatchee – Ohatchee High School
February 28 Clay – Clay/Chalkville High School

All shows begin at 6:30 pm with doors opening at 5:00 pm so get there early for a good seat.

I had a great time last night at the Alys Stephens Center with my Valentine. We went to see Jim Brickman and his shows are always good. Enjoyed the singing of Anne Cochran and Luke McMasters, too. I hope you have a great day. Severe Weather Awareness Week kicks of next week and don’t forget to drop by the NWS open house at their office at the Shelby County Airport. Godspeed.

-Brian-