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Another Hot One But Change Ahead

| 7:05 am July 13, 2014

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.

As the upper ridge loosens its grip we will see another hot and mostly dry weather day for Central Alabama on this Sunday in the middle of July; highs will be in the 92 to 95 degree range with hazy sunshine. A few afternoon showers or storms will kick off in afternoon heat, but they should be fairly widely spaced much like we saw yesterday. A weak convergence boundary could set up along or just northwest of the Interstate 59 corridor where we may see the greatest threat for those isolated showers.

The ridge slides west into early next week, and models continue to develop a strong long wave upper trough for mid-summer over the eastern half of the nation. Afternoon showers and storms are possible Monday, with showers and storms to become likely Monday night and Tuesday in advance of a cold front pushing into the Southeast from the north and northwest. There is fairly good agreement between the GFS and the European in bringing the frontal boundary through Central Alabama, so this adds to the overall confidence in seeing a mid-July cold front make it into the region.

Much like July 4th and 5th, I expect to see some dry, continental air invade Alabama Wednesday and Thursday with lower humidity and cooler nights. Lower humidity is always refreshing in July. But unlike the model runs yesterday, moisture levels don’t stay down long and they begin rebounding on Thursday and into Friday putting showers back in the forecast. A short wave trough moving across the Central US Friday will aide in moisture return from the southwest and perhaps bring us some good rain chances for next weekend.

For those headed to the beach, look for 7 to 9 hours of sunshine along the Alabama Gulf Coast through Monday with widely scattered storms. Highs on the immediate coast will be in the upper 80s, and sea water temperatures are mostly in the lower and mid 80s along the Alabama and North Florida shoreline. Showers and thunderstorms will be more likely along the coast by Tuesday.

Voodoo country looks really hot with a 600 height contour over the western half of the US with a deep trough situated over the East Coast. This pattern would bring a northwesterly flow to the Middle Mississippi River Valley, so will always have to be cautious about the development of long-lived MCCs – Mesoscale Convection Complexes – coming out of the Central US.

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 Bill Murray
Brian Peters E-Warn (AL wx watches/warnings)

Thanks for staying tuned to the Blog. James Spann will have the next Weather Xtreme Video update on Monday morning. Watch the heat today and Godspeed.

-Brian-

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Afternoon Storms

| 6:04 pm July 12, 2014

Showers and storms have slowly grown across Central Alabama this afternoon as temperatures warmed into the 90s.

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Most of them are west of I-65, with the heaviest concentration over Fayette, northwestern Tuscaloosa and Walker Counties. Another decent one is over western Jefferson County over the Hueytown/Pleasant Grove area. To the south there are others over Hale, Bibb and Perry County.

The lone exception is straddling the St. Clair/Talladega County County south of Pell City.

Everything is moving southwest and south.

If you find yourself under one of these storms, expect heavy rain, lightning and gusty winds.

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Mixed Sun & Clouds, Hot

| 12:23 pm July 12, 2014

It has been a mostly sunny for much of the state today, but as the surface heats up, we are beginning to see those puffy-white, cumulus clouds bubble up across the state. We are seeing some ridging in place and that is limiting a lot of the upward vertical motion over the state, which will keep our rain chances very low for today. Through the rest of the afternoon, we will continue to see clouds on the increase, but once the sun sets, the sky should return to mostly clear conditions.

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It is turning out to be a rather hot day for most of the state. Temps have already warmed into the upper 80s and lower 90s. Over the next few hours, our temps will continue to warm and most locations will see highs this afternoon into the lower and mid-90s. There are a few very small showers developing across the state, but these are few and far between, and most of us will stay dry today. We can expect very similar weather as we head into our Sunday as well.

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On This Date in 1980

| 10:00 am July 12, 2014

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Headlines on Saturday, July 12, 1980 focused on the Iranian hostage crisis, which was in its 292nd day. One of the hostages had been released by the Ayatollah for “humanitarian reasons”. The GOP was putting the finishing touches on its platform prior to their national convention in Detroit.

There were fears that Mt. Hood in Oregon was getting ready to erupt, a la Mount St. Helens, since quakes had been shaking the area. A hijacker in Seattle had been given $100,000 and a parachute as he seemed destined to be the next D.B. Cooper. The economy was in the tank, with talk that the extended recession was comparable to the Great Depression in many ways.

The movies that were playing then included The Shining and Airplane.

High temperatures from July 12, 1980 courtesy NOAA Central Library Data Imaging Project

High temperatures from July 12, 1980 courtesy NOAA Central Library Data Imaging Project. Click image to enlarge.

But the big news across the southern United States was the heat. Birmingham was in the middle of a thirteen day heat wave, with temperatures 90F or higher for those thirteen days. The mercury reached at least 100F on eight consecutive days. The high temperature at the Birmingham Airport topped out at 104F on that Saturday, the hottest it had been so far in the hot spell. The next day would see 106F, the hottest of the heat wave.

Air conditioning repair companies were doing a land office business. Bank managers resorted to putting blocks of ice in front of electric fans to “cool off the girls” in the drive-thrus. The local Coca-Cola bottler reported that soft drink sales were up 35 percent.

The weather page in the Birmingham News wistfully noted that it was midwinter in Australia.

The toll was beginning to rise across Alabama. At least four deaths had been reported so far. Before it was over, at least 120 Alabamians lost their lives to heat related illnesses. 200,000 chickens also succumbed to the extreme heat.

The June-September 1980 Heat Wave is the first billion dollar weather-related disaster in U.S. history. Damage to agriculture and related industries was estimated at $20 billion. The sweltering weather claimed the lives of over 10,000 Americans.

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Hot Weekend, But…

| 6:57 am July 12, 2014

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.

An upper ridge will mean hot and mostly dry weather for Central Alabama today and Sunday; highs will be in the 92 to 95 degree range with hazy sunshine. A few afternoon showers or storms will fire up in afternoon heat, but they should be few and far between.

The ridge moves west into early next week, and models continue to develop a strong, long wave upper trough for mid-summer over the eastern half of the nation. Afternoon showers and storms are possible Monday, with showers and storms to become likely Tuesday in advance of a cold front pushing into the Southeast from the north. Nice to see fairly good agreement between the GFS and the European which adds to the overall confidence in seeing a mid-July cold front make it into the region.

Much like July 4th and 5th, I expect to see some dry, continental air invade Alabama Wednesday through Friday with lower humidity and cooler nights. As James noted yesterday, we might make a run at record lows early Thursday morning with temperatures reaching the 58-62 degree range. Highs over the latter half of the week will be in the 80s with low humidity levels. Lowered humidity is always refreshing for July.

Moisture levels come back Friday and into next weekend returning showers to the forecast.

For those headed to the beach, look for 7 to 9 hours of sunshine along the Alabama Gulf Coast through Monday with only widely scattered storms. Highs on the immediate coast will be in the upper 80s, and sea water temperatures are mostly in the lower and mid 80s. Showers and thunderstorms will be more likely along the coast by Tuesday.

Voodoo country features the 594 heat bubble over the western half of the US with a long wave trough situated over the East Coast. This pattern would bring a northwesterly flow to the Middle Mississippi River Valley, so will always have to be anxious about the development of long-lived MCCs – Mesoscale Convection Complexes – coming out of the Central US.

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 Bill Murray
Brian Peters E-Warn (AL wx watches/warnings)

I anticipate posting the next Weather Xtreme Video by 7:30 or 8 Sunday morning. Stay cool and Godspeed.

-Brian-

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Hot Weekend; Big Changes Next Week

| 3:22 pm July 11, 2014

**No afternoon Weather Xtreme video today**

RADAR CHECK: As expected, not much action this afternoon. We have a few isolated showers over the far eastern part of the state, and they are drifting south…

Screen Shot 2014-07-11 at 3.15.05 PM

THE ALABAMA WEEKEND: An upper ridge will mean hot and mostly dry weather for our state tomorrow and Sunday; highs in the 92-95 degree range with hazy sunshine. A few afternoon showers or storms can always fire up on a summer afternoon around here, but they should be few and far between.

NEXT WEEK: The ridge moves west, and models continue to develop a strong, long wave upper trough for mid-summer over the eastern half of the nation. Afternoon showers and storms are possible Monday, with showers and storms become more widespread Tuesday in advance of a cold front pushing down from the north.

A nice dose of dry, continental air should invade Alabama Wednesday through Friday with lower humidity and cooler nights. Looks like we might make a run at record lows early Thursday morning with temperatures reaching the 58-62 degree range. Highs over the latter half of the week will be in the 80s with low humidity levels. Very refreshing for July.

GULF COAST WEATHER: About 7 to 9 hours of sunshine along the Alabama Gulf Coast through Monday with only widely scattered storms. Highs on the immediate coast will be in the upper 80s, and sea water temperatures are mostly in the mid 80s. Showers and thunderstorms will be more likely on the coast from Panama City to Gulf Shores by Tuesday. The image below is from Orange Beach this afternoon… photo from @ringram2077

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TROPICS: All remains quiet and tropical storm formation is not expected through the weekend across the Atlantic basin.

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…

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Look for my next Weather Xtreme video here Monday morning by 7:00…. Brian Peters will have the video updates tomorrow and Sunday. Enjoy the weekend!

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A Hotter Weekend; Cooler Next Week

| 5:17 am July 11, 2014

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.

TRENDING HOTTER AND DRIER: An upper high will build into Alabama from the west over the next few days, setting up a hot and relatively dry weekend. We project a high around 90 today, with low to mid 90s tomorrow and Sunday. Days will feature a good supply of hazy sunshine, and while a shower or storm is possible each afternoon, they risk of any one spot getting wet is only in the 10-20 percent range.

BIG CHANGES NEXT WEEK: A big pattern change as the upper high moves west, and a strong upper trough forms over the eastern third of the nation by Tuesday.

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We begin to see an increase in the chance of showers and storms by Monday afternoon, but the wettest day should Tuesday as the front moves down into Tennessee. Highs drop into the 80s Tuesday because of clouds and showers.

Then, a refreshing airmass arrives Wednesday with lower humidity. We have a good chance of dropping into the 50s early Thursday morning; the record low for July 17 is 62 set in 1965, so a very good chance we ease into the record books for the second time this month. We stay dry into Friday. See the Weather Xtreme video for the maps, graphics, and details.

GULF COAST WEATHER: About 7 to 9 hours of sunshine each day through the weekend with only widely scattered thunderstorms from Panama City west to Gulf Shores. Highs on the immediate coast will be in the upper 80s, and the sea water temperature this morning at the Dauphin Island Sea Lab is 81 degrees.

TROPICS: A large amount of dry air covers the Atlantic basin, and tropical storm formation is not expected through the weekend.

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
Instagram

Look for the next Weather Xtreme video here by 4:00 this afternoon…. enjoy the day….

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Storms Along Front

| 8:34 pm July 10, 2014

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Storms have developed this evening along a southward moving cool front.

The heaviest storm is in eastern St. Clair County, centered near Ragland. A significant weather advisory is in effect for this storm.

Others are forming along the Jefferson/Shelby County line, with cells south of Leeds, near Meadowbrook and northwest of Pelham.

The cells are moving east or east southeast at less than 10 mph.

Expect very heavy rain, dangerous lightning and gusty winds with the storms.

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