Agony of the Wait

| December 23, 2012 @ 12:06 pm

If you are reading this Blog today, it’s probably because you have been reading our posts or you have heard about the potential for severe storms on Christmas afternoon and evening. And you probably have a big interest in the weather.

As a meteorologist, I have a big interest in the weather, but sometimes I can become immensely aggravated at how slow things happen. Take today as a good example. I wrote/videoed the Weather Xtreme Video using data from the 06Z model runs, 00Z for the European since it only runs twice a day. Here we are approaching noon and I want more data – morning soundings and the latest model runs. And I’m getting some of that! But SPC won’t be posting an update to Day 3 until about 2:30 am tomorrow, and I do appreciate their take on these developing severe weather scenarios.

So here I sit wanting desperately to provide new information but there isn’t a whole lot new to tell yet!

The GFS is coming in so we’re seeing some data and from what I’ve been able to see, the discussion from this morning is still on track.

The morning soundings are in! They confirm that the atmosphere over Central Alabama is very, very dry. So no matter what radar echoes you see for much of the afternoon, little if any of that rain will reach the surface because the atmosphere will have to moisten up before anything can get to the ground. So the risk for any rain through early evening is very small.

The European model is not in yet! So I can’t compare the two models yet to see how they are doing. I must say, though, that I cannot remember a time when those two models have been in such close agreement on a weather system for so many days. I think I started looking seriously at the Christmas Day storm last Thursday, and the two models have been in close agreement since then. Close agreement does not mean identical, but when the low positions and low tracks are as close as they have been, confidence is high on that solution. This is pretty amazing considering that most of the time the models don’t typically agree closely that far out. Close agreement means confidence goes up, but we all know BOTH models can be wrong!!

Speaking of wrong, I’m still hopeful that the storm system might take a more southerly track or not be as intense. It doesn’t seem likely, but such a track or lesser intensity would reduce the area exposed to severe weather. And I can’t think of anyone who wants to see severe weather on this particular day of the year!

And while I’m rambling and ranting a bit, let me wish everyone who reads the Blog a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. Please be weather safe and keep up with the latest information. Godspeed.


Category: Alabama's Weather

About the Author ()

Brian Peters is one of the television meteorologists at ABC3340 in Birmingham and a retired NWS Warning Coordination Meteorologist. He handles the weekend Weather Xtreme Videos and forecast discussion and is the Webmaster for the popular WeatherBrains podcast.

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