A Freeze Early Tomorrow Morning

| March 20, 2013 @ 3:48 pm

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COLD START TO SPRING: Welcome to spring; the vernal equinox was at 6:02 a.m. CDT. As expected, morning clouds have moved to the south, and the sky is generally sunny across the northern half of Alabama. Temperatures are mostly in the 59-62 degree range.

FREEZE TONIGHT: The GFS is now printing a low of 26 degrees for Birmingham early tomorrow; we figure most places will see a low somewhere between 25 and 30 degrees with a clear sky and light wind. Look for lots of sunshine tomorrow morning, but clouds will arrive late in the day.

SNOW/SLEET TOMORROW NIGHT? A disturbance will bring precipitation into Alabama tomorrow night. Due to the wet-bulb cooling effect, we still believe the atmosphere will be cold enough for snow along and north of U.S. 278… or north of a line from Hamilton to Cullman to Gadsden. The best chance of accumulating snow will be along and north of the Tennessee River, especially around Muscle Shoals. A dusting to around one inch is possible, mostly on grass, across Colbert, Lauderdale, Lawrence, Limestone, Morgan, Madison, and Jackson counties. A few slick spots could develop, but major, widespread travel problems are not expected.

Down this way, the precipitation will most likely begin as sleet (ice pellets), with a little snow possibly mixed in. Then, it changes to rain early Friday morning. No accumulation or travel issues are expected for Tuscaloosa, Birmingham, and Anniston.

Remember, we have limited skill in forecasting winter events in Alabama late in the season, so we will be watching for any potential surprises.

Friday will be cold and wet, with periods of light rain. Not sure we can get out of the 40s; a few spots could reach the low 50s.

SATURDAY SOAKER: Saturday still looks a very wet day. Rain much of the day, with some thunder possible as a warm front lifts slowly northward from the Gulf. There could be a few strong storms over South Alabama, south of the warm front… up our way the risk of severe weather for now looks pretty small. Rain amounts of one inch are likely.

SUNDAY: The GFS continues to look pretty dry. The model suggests the rain will end early in the day, perhaps even during the pre-dawn hours, with the sun breaking through during the day. A cold front will be passing through; it could very well be a day with the high temperature coming during the morning hours followed by falling afternoon temperatures. The chance of strong afternoon storms is fading with this scenario.

NEXT WEEK: The weather looks generally cold and dry. Highs only in the 50s; a good chance we go below freezing Tuesday, Wednesday, and possibly Thursday morning. It won’t feel like spring.

AT THE BEACH: Dry tomorrow, but a few showers or storms are possible Friday and Saturday; just a slight risk of a shower Sunday. Highs will be in the 60s along the immediate coast. Most of next week will be dry with sunny days and fair nights, but temperatures will be cool with a high around 60 degrees each afternoon. The sea water temperature at the Dauphin Island Sea Lab this afternoon is only 63 degrees.

WEATHER RADIO HELP: We will be at the Publix in Chelsea tomorrow evening from 3:30 until 6:30… if you need help with a weather radio, have questions, or need to buy one, then come see us. Every Alabama home and business needs one; Monday’s severe weather event was a great reminder of that.

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. Great to have weather legend Chuck Doswell on with us this week… scroll down for the show notes.

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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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