Strong/Severe Storms Possible This Weekend

| April 11, 2018 @ 5:52 am

DRY THROUGH FRIDAY: It is a cold April morning; our Skywatcher at Black Creek, just northeast of Gadsden, reports 34 degrees; Cullman and Haleyville are in the upper 30s at 38. The day will be sunny with a high near 70 degrees this afternoon.

We stay dry tomorrow and Friday; lots of sunshine tomorrow, and partly sunny tomorrow with warmer afternoons… the high tomorrow will be near 80, followed by low 80s Friday. To the west Friday we will be watching developments to the west; severe storms are possible from East Texas to Missouri ahead of a vigorous storm system.

STORMY WEEKEND IN ALABAMA: Confidence is very high that rain and storms will impact Alabama this weekend, but it is still difficult to resolve details this far out due to model differences. SPC has introduced a risk of severe storms for most of the state on their “Day 4” outlook for Saturday and Saturday night…

There should be sufficient shear and instability for strong to severe storms; for now it looks like the primary threat will come from strong, potentially damaging straight line winds. But, an isolated tornado or two can’t be ruled out, and hail will be possible as well.

Concerning timing, the American global model (the GFS) is trending toward the slower European model (ECMWF) solution. And as the event is just getting into range of the North American Mesoscale model (the NAM), it seems to be in better agreement with the slower Euro. Bottom line is that for now, we project the highest threat of severe storms in Alabama to be from 4:00 p.m. Saturday through 9:00 a.m. Sunday. And yes, that does mean a decent part of the day Saturday could be dry before the storms arrive for those planning outdoor events.

Understand we really need to get within a 60 hour window before we can be highly confident in the timing, so just know this forecast could change as we we get closer to the weekend.

Rain amounts of around 2 inches are likely, and some localized flooding issues are possible. Much cooler air will flow into the state following the passage of the storms; a good chance we won’t get out of the 50s Sunday with a brisk north wind and lingering clouds.

NEXT WEEK: Much of the week looks dry for now; Monday and Tuesday morning will be cold for mid-April with potential for lows in the 30s over parts of North/Central Alabama… growers will need to monitor conditions for frost potential. See the Weather Xtreme video for maps, graphics, and more details.

ON THIS DATE IN 2011: Thunderstorms produced damage across western and souther parts of the Birmingham metro area from Bessemer to Mountain Brook; a short lived EF-1 tornado also touched down in Vestavia Hills. It was the first event during an exceptionally active severe weather month; a number of tornadoes would touch down four days later on April 15 across the state, followed by a generational tornado outbreak on April 27 that killed 252 people.

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I will be speaking to a big home school group in Cullman this morning, followed by a talk to the Cullman Area Association of Realtors. Look for the next Weather Xtreme video here by 4:00 this afternoon… enjoy the day!

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Category: Alabama's Weather, ALL POSTS, Weather Xtreme Videos

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James Spann is one of the most recognized and trusted television meteorologists in the industry. He holds the AMS CCM designation and television seals from the AMS and NWA. He is a past winner of the Broadcast Meteorologist of the Year from both professional organizations.

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