Freezing Rain NE Alabama Tomorrow?

| December 14, 2010 @ 6:15 am | 15 Replies

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FRIGID MORNING: Check out these 5:00 a.m. observations around Alabama…

Monte Sano State Park (Huntsville) 9
Haleyville 10
Onenota 11
Collinsville 11
Cedar Bluff 12
Bremen 12
Cullman 12
Fayette 12
Fort Payne 13
Springville 13
Concord 13
Center Point 14
Coker 15
Cottondale 15
Clanton 16

The great American weather legend, J.B. Elliott, will have a detailed list of morning lows a little later when all of the reports come in.

We note the record low for Birmingham today (December 14) is 14… recorded way back in 1917. The temperature has dropped to 14 at 7:00 at the Birmingham Airport, so we have tied the record for the date.

TODAY: Pretty simple forecast… sunny and cold. We have a chance at reaching the mid 30s today, but many folks north and east of Birmingham will stay below freezing again all day. Sure looks like some of the colder pockets of Northeast Alabama will be below freezing for 84 consecutive hours. This is quite a cold wave.

FREEZING RAIN ISSUES TOMORROW? The latest model runs are a little slow in bringing in overrunning precipitation tomorrow, which might prevent bridge icing issues for the Birmingham metro. It will be a close call. Watch the Weather Xtreme video, and you will see the RPM now holds off on any precipitation until after 12:00 noon. So, no problems tomorrow morning, but parts of the state will see freezing rain, mainly north and east of Birmingham.

It now appears the greatest chance of freezing rain (liquid that falls with surface temperatures are below 32) will be north of a line from Muscle Shoals to Cullman to to Oneonta to Anniston and on to Roanoke. The main window for bridge icing in this area will be from 12:00 until 6:00 p.m. The freezing rain will be light, so this isn’t a major threat, but with the cold infrastructure it won’t take much for bridges and overpasses to become icy and dangerous.

Warm air advection kicks in tomorrow night and temperatures will rise above freezing for most of the state, but it often takes longer that you imagine for the cold air to be scoured out DeKalb, Jackson, and Cherokee Counties of Northeast Alabama.

The NWS in Huntsville has issued a winter weather advisory for their county warning area due to the potential for freezing rain. We will watch the situation closely and have additional updates throughout the day and tonight.

THURSDAY: Much warmer as the surface warm front moves north… we rise into the low 60s with a few periods of rain during the day.

FRIDAY/SATURDAY: The front drifts south again, and Friday will be cooler with light rain at times. Then, a surface low forms in the northern Gulf Friday night in response to a strong short wave, and will keep the rain going Friday night into Saturday. The surface low track depicted by the GFS is actually favorable for snow across North Alabama, but the low level thickness values are too warm for snow at this point.

SUNDAY: The surface low rolls up the Atlantic coast, and for Alabama we will forecast clearing, breezy, and colder weather with highs dropping into the low to mid 40s.

CHRISTMAS WEEK: Still way too early to be specific about Christmas. The overall pattern based on teleconnections suggest that it will be fairly cold toward the end of next week, but the 06Z operational GFS looks pretty benign. See the Weather Xtreme video for all the long range ideas.

WEATHER BRAINS: Don’t forget you can listen to our weekly 30 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. Scroll down for the show notes on this week’s new episode…. we had a great time last night recording it.

FOLLOW ALONG: Here are our weather team Twitter accounts….

James Spann Jason Simpson Ashley Brand
J. B. Elliott Bill Murray Brian Peters
Dr. Tim Coleman WeatherBrains Podcast E-Warn (AL wx watches/warnings)

I have a weather program this morning at St. Rose Academy in Birmingham… be looking for the next Weather Xtreme video by 3:30 this afternoon. Enjoy the day and STAY WARM!


Category: Alabama's Weather

About the Author ()

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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