Scattered Storms This Afternoon; Some Strong/Severe

| April 16, 2013 @ 6:18 am

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LIKE SUMMER: We are starting the day with temperatures in the mid to upper 60s in most places, with dewpoints in the 60s as well. We note a few showers over North/Central Alabama at daybreak… so some of you will have to turn on the windshield wipers on the way to work.

Today will be warm and humid, and we should rise into the 80s with intervals of midday sunshine. Then, during the peak of the afternoon warmth, showers and storms will fire up in a very unstable airmass (surface based CAPE values should exceed 2,000 j/kg this afternoon). SPC introduced a standard “slight risk” of severe weather for about the northern third of Alabama this afternoon… while the storms will be scattered, they will pack a punch. The primary risk from today’s afternoon storms will come from hail, and strong winds, and the heavier storms will be most likely from about 2:00 until 8:00 p.m. But, like a summer day, it won’t rain everywhere. The chance of any one spot seeing a storm later today is about one in three.

TOMORROW: Another warm and humid day for Alabama with a high up in the mid 80s. We could see an afternoon storm in spots, but they should be more widely separated due to warmer air aloft. And, to the west, SPC maintains a “moderate risk” of severe weather for much of Oklahoma, where a significant tornado outbreak is very possible ahead of a major upper trough moving out of the western U.S.

THURSDAY: Alabama’s weather will be warm and mostly dry; warm air aloft should keep most of the state shower-free. To the west, more severe weather is likely in the broad area from Houston to Detroit. Higher severe weather probabilities are up Thursday for cities like Shreveport, Little Rock, and Memphis. A few tornadoes will be possible in this region.

SEVERE STORMS FRIDAY MORNING FOR ALABAMA? No doubt a squall line will pass through Alabama early Friday morning, but for now SPC has not issued any severe weather risk. The primary window for this line of storms will be from about 2:00 until 11:00 a.m… which thankfully is at a time when the air is most stable. The GFS is showing surface based CAPE values only in the 100-250 j/kg range, and that will be a big limiting factor. Also, the primary surface low is far to the north, over Michigan, which should help to limit the tornado threat.

But, the storms Friday morning could produce strong, gusty winds as they pass through, and we can’t rule out an isolated tornado in the line. We will keep a close eye on severe weather parameters as it gets closer. Rain amounts of about 3/4″ are likely.

The storms should be out of Alabama by midday Friday, and we turn cooler with a high between 67 and 70 degrees.

OUR WEEKEND: The weather looks delightful Saturday and Sunday. Mornings will be cool with lows in the 40s; some of the colder pockets over North Alabama could reach the upper 30s early Saturday. The high will be in the upper 60s Saturday, followed by low to mid 70s Sunday. Dry air means lots of sun and no rain.

The benign weather should continue into early next week… see the Weather Xtreme video for maps, graphics, and details.

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I have a weather program later today at Bluff Park Elementary School… look for the next Weather Xtreme video here by 4:00 this afternoon. Enjoy the day!

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Category: Alabama's Weather

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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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