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On This Date 42 Years Ago

ABC 33/40 Weather Blog - 3 hours 57 min ago

On Sunday night, May 27, 1973, I saw serious tornado damage for the first time in my life, and it changed my life. The sights and sounds are still fresh in my mind; almost like it happened yesterday.

I was wrapping up my junior year at Tuscaloosa High School, and on that Sunday night we received a call for help from our friends in Bibb County. A tornado had gone right through the center of Brent, and amateur radio operators from Tuscaloosa were needed to establish communication with relief agencies in Birmingham and other places. Remember, there were no cell phones in 1973, and this was an urgent need. I arrived with a group from Tuscaloosa within one hour of the tornado, and we were all stunned at what we saw. Eerie darkness, an odd odor (many people that have experienced call it the “smell of death”), roads blocked by trees, and debris everywhere. I wound up coming back the next morning, and stayed in Centreville (adjacent to Brent) handling communication from a church.

Down in Brent, a total of 5 people died in the storm, including Andrew Mitchell, who was attending evening worship services at the Brent Baptist Church, which was destroyed. Many more were injured, and town was just about wiped out by the EF-4 twister. That was actually just a segment of the damage; the tornado first touched down just northeast of Demopolis, and went through Greensboro, where one person was killed and 72 injured. It continued northeast, and took out the old National Weather Service radar site on Alabama Highway 25 before striking downtown Brent. The crew at the radar site had to take cover in the ditch across the street.

From Brent, the path continued near Montevallo and Childersburg, before it finally lifted on the western slope of Mount Cheaha in East Alabama. A total of 216 buildings were destroyed, 570 buildings were damaged, 97 mobile homes were destroyed, and 45 businesses were damaged or destroyed. More than 12,000 acres of timber was destroyed. It was a storm I will never forget, even though it happened 42 years ago.

We should note an EF-3 tornado that same day impacted a Tarrant-Center Point-Springville-St Clair Springs-Ashville-Gadsden path. Heavy damage occurred in Center Point where 32 homes and 48 mobile homes were destroyed. Over 300 homes were damaged. One person was killed by that storm.

This came at the tail end of the spring tornado season; a reminder we can have a strong/violent tornado in late May in Alabama.

This great site from John Brasher has more details about the situation in Brent.

Categories: Weather

Showers/Storms Develop Later Today

ABC 33/40 Weather Blog - 4 hours 18 min ago

AT DAYBREAK: It is a quiet late May morning across the great state of Alabama; nothing on radar… the sky is mostly cloudy, and temperatures are mostly in the 65 to 70 degree range. The high resolution HRRR model suggests the best chance of rain today will come this afternoon with a band of showers and storms passing through.

SPC has all of the state in a “marginal” risk of severe weather today… a few of the afternoon storms could produce gusty winds and brief heavy rain, but organized severe weather isn’t likely.

TOMORROW/FRIDAY: Showers and storms remain possible, but they should be more scattered in nature, and mostly during the afternoon and evening hours. Otherwise, a mix of sun and clouds both days with a high up in the low to mid 80s.

THE WEEKEND: No real change… a moist airmass stays in place, but not much dynamic forcing for rain. So, we will deal with “scattered, mostly afternoon and evening showers and thunderstorms Saturday and Sunday with a partly sunny sky both days. Highs will be in the mid 80s, right at average levels for the end of May in Alabama.

NEXT WEEK: Monday marks the beginning of meteorological summer, and is also the first day of the Atlantic/Gulf of Mexico hurricane season. Looks like the weather will be very routine for the week with warm, humid weather continuing along with some risk of scattered showers and storms on a daily basis. See the Weather Xtreme video for maps, graphics, and more details.

AT THE BEACH: About 6 to 8 hours of sunshine today with a passing shower or storm possible from Panama City west to Gulf Shores. Then, 7 to 9 hours of sun daily tomorrow through the weekend with widely scattered showers and storms. Highs on the immediate coast will remain in the low 80s, and the sea water temperature early this morning at the Dauphin Island Sea Lab is 78 degrees.

COLLEGE SOFTBALL WORLD SERIES: We have Alabama and Auburn playing in Oklahoma City in the tournament that begins tomorrow; if you are headed that way understand showers and storms are possible on a daily basis, and rain delays are certainly possible, if not likely. The weather will be mostly rain-free by Sunday, however. Highs will be mostly in the mid to upper 70s.

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.

CONNECT: You can find me on all of the major social networks…

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I will be speaking at UAB’s Deep South Center for Occupational Health & Safety this morning, and at Hueytown Baptist Church tonight between newscasts. Look for the next Weather Xtreme video here by 4:00 this afternoon… enjoy the day!

Categories: Weather

Unsettled Weather Continues Tomorrow

ABC 33/40 Weather Blog - Tue, 05/26/2015 - 15:25

RADAR CHECK: Some light rain lingers over East Alabama this afternoon, but the stronger storms are now over Georgia. The sky is mostly cloudy, and temperatures are mostly in the mid to upper 70s.

TOMORROW: Showers and storms remain possible, but it won’t rain all day, and the sun could peek out at times. We note SPC has much of the state in a “marginal” severe weather threat, but like today the overall chance of severe storms looks small. We should rise into the low 80s tomorrow afternoon.

THURSDAY/FRIDAY: Showers become fewer in number and more scattered… and mostly during the afternoon and evening hours. Otherwise, a mix of sun and clouds both days with a high in the low to mid 80s.

THE ALABAMA WEEKEND: Very routine weather for late May; partly sunny, warm, and humid days with the risk of “scattered, mostly afternoon and evening” showers and thunderstorms. Chance of any one spot getting wet each day is about one in four, and highs will be in the mid 80s, right at seasonal levels. And, we stay in that pattern into the first few days of June.

AT THE BEACH: We project about 6 to 8 hours of sunshine each day tomorrow through the weekend, with the daily risk of scattered showers and thunderstorms (very routine for summer). Highs will remain in the low 80s on the immediate coast; the sea water temperature early this morning at the Dauphin Island Sea Lab is 79 degrees.

If you missed it, a waterspout developed just off the Alabama Gulf Coast this morning around 8:15… this photo is from @yankeemikep

WOMEN’S COLLEGE WORLD SERIES: Both Auburn and Alabama are playing in Oklahoma City later this week and over the weekend; showers and thunderstorms are likely on a daily basis Thursday through Saturday, so expect rain delays. Showers thin out a bit Sunday; highs will be in the 77-81 degree range most days. Some flooding issues are not out of the question since the soil there is totally saturated.

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.

CONNECT: You can find me on all of the major social networks…

Facebook
Twitter
Google Plus
Instagram

Look for the next Weather Xtreme video here by 7:00 a.m. tomorrow…

Categories: Weather

Line of Storms Moving East, Not Severe

ABC 33/40 Weather Blog - Tue, 05/26/2015 - 09:04

Our line of showers and storms has been fairly well behaved this morning. There was one severe thunderstorm warning for Jackson MS overnight, with some tree and power line damage reported there, but the line continued to slowly weaken as it moved into Alabama early this morning.

The line has been nearly as straight as a ruler but it starting to lose is organization. The good news is that this orientation tends to produce the least damaging winds. The strongest storms are from western Tuscaloosa County through Hale County just before 9 a.m. Others extend from Fayette, western Walker and Winston Counties.

Here is a radar animation over the past four hours.

The line should continue its steady eastward progression. None of the storms are severe or are expected to become severe this morning. Alabama is not included in the Slight Risk outlook area from the SPC.

Others storms may form late this evening and move across the area, but they shouldn’t be severe either.

More rain and storms are on tap for tomorrow, Wednesday and Thursday it appears, although they should start to thin a bit after tomorrow.

Categories: Weather

More Rain/Storms For Alabama Today

ABC 33/40 Weather Blog - Tue, 05/26/2015 - 06:16

RADAR CHECK: The band of severe storms that brought serious flooding and some wind damage to parts of Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, and Louisiana last night, as expected, has been steadily weakening early this morning, and is entering West Alabama as I write this around sunrise.

We will forecast a good chance of rain and thunderstorms for all of Alabama again today, and we remain unimpressed with the severe weather threat. SPC has dropped the “slight risk” for our state, and we are now just in a “marginal risk” through tonight. Wind fields are weak, and overall severe weather parameters are low. But, a few strong storms are possible later with gusty winds and heavy rain.

Rain tapers off from west to east this afternoon; many communities won’t get out of the 70s again today because of clouds and rain.

TOMORROW: Another fairly wet day with a deep moisture axis in place; we expect scattered to numerous showers and thunderstorms with a high in the low 80s. SPC has a “marginal” risk of severe weather in place for much of Alabama.

THURSDAY/FRIDAY: Showers and storms become more scattered in nature, and will happen mostly during the afternoon and evening hours as the air aloft become warmer. Expect a mix of sun and clouds both days with a high in the low to mid 80s.

THE WEEKEND: Not much change. Partly sunny, warm, and humid Saturday and Sunday with the usual risk of “scattered, mostly afternoon and evening showers and thunderstorms”. Highs over the weekend will be generally in the 83 to 86 degree range, right at seasonal levels for late May in Alabama.

And, no real change is expected into early next week as June begins. See the Weather Xtreme video for maps, graphics, and more details.

AT THE BEACH: Occasionally cloudy today from Panama City over to Gulf Shores with a few showers and storms likely, then about 6 to 8 hours of sunshine each day tomorrow through the weekend, with the daily risk of scattered showers and thunderstorms (very routine for summer). Highs will remain in the low 80s on the immediate coast; the sea water temperature early this morning at the Dauphin Island Sea Lab is 79 degrees.

WOMEN’S COLLEGE WORLD SERIES: Both Auburn and Alabama are playing in Oklahoma City later this week and over the weekend; showers and thunderstorms are likely on a daily basis Thursday through Saturday, so expect rain delays. Showers thin out a bit Sunday; highs will be in the 77-81 degree range most days. Some flooding issues are not out of the question since the soil there is totally saturated.

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. Scroll down for the show notes on the new episode we recorded last night as we remember J.B. Elliott, the great American weather legend that passed away earlier this month.

CONNECT: You can find me on all of the major social networks…

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Look for the next Weather Xtreme video here by 4:00 this afternoon… enjoy the day…

Categories: Weather

WeatherBrains 487: Tribute to JB

ABC 33/40 Weather Blog - Tue, 05/26/2015 - 05:15

WeatherBrains Episode 487 is now online (May 25, 2015). If you are crazy about weather, this is THE netcast audio program for you! This is the longest running podcast on weather having been on the air for nearly 10 years.

Tonight’s show will be a little different as we pay tribute to our friend, JB Elliott. JB was a long time mentor for many of the WeatherBrains gang especially our host, James Spann, so it was appropriate to honor him on this Memorial Day.

Other discussions in this weekly podcast include topics like:

  • Extremes: 102 at Death Valley, CA, and 29 at Yellowstone Lake, WY, Santa Maria, CO, & Waverly, CO
  • Epic flooding in Texas and Oklahoma
  • Severe weather across Central Plains area
  • All time monthly record rainfall for Wichita Falls at around 14 inches
  • Wild weather in Arkansas, Oklahoma, Texas, and Louisiana with severe weather and floods
  • and more!
  • Our email bag officer is continuing to handle the incoming messages from our listeners.

    From The Weather Center:

    WeatherBrains 101: This episode of 101 goes off the beaten path just a little to explore something called petrichor. This is a quick explanation about that refreshingly aromatic smell that comes with a light rain after a short dry spell and how it works.

    Listener Surveys: Okay, we continue to drive this topic into the ground, but we really do like to hear from you. Many thanks to everyone who has taken the time to fill out the Listener Survey. The survey takes just a minute or two to complete and provides us with an opportunity to learn where you are and hear your thoughts and comments on the show. Click here to take the survey.

    Web Sites from Episode 487:

    To subscribe to the brand new SkyWritings, an email newsletter from the WeatherBrains gang, click HERE.

    Loss of a Legend

    November, 1989, home video of JB Elliott by David Black

    Picks of the Week:

    Bill Murray – Weather story map

    Brian Peters – Water woes for Wichita Falls

    Kevin Selle – Boston Globe Cities in the Cloud

    James Spann – WeatherBrains audio archive

    SkyDavers Blog – The Fog Bank

    The WeatherBrains crew includes your host, James Spann, plus other notable geeks like Nate Johnson, Bill Murray, Aubrey Urbanowicz, Dr. John Scala, Rick Smith, Kevin Selle, and Brian Peters. They bring together a wealth of weather knowledge and experience for another fascinating netcast about weather.

    Categories: Weather

    WeatherBrains 487: Tribute to JB

    WeatherBrains - Tue, 05/26/2015 - 04:45

    WeatherBrains Episode 487 is now online (May 25, 2015). If you are crazy about weather, this is THE netcast audio program for you! This is the longest running podcast on weather having been on the air for nearly 10 years.

    Tonight’s show will be a little different as we pay tribute to our friend, JB Elliott. JB was a long time mentor for many of the WeatherBrains gang especially our host, James Spann, so it was appropriate to honor him on this Memorial Day.

    Other discussions in this weekly podcast include topics like:

  • Extremes: 102 at Death Valley, CA, and 29 at Yellowstone Lake, WY, Santa Maria, CO, & Waverly, CO
  • Epic flooding in Texas and Oklahoma
  • Severe weather across Central Plains area
  • All time monthly record rainfall for Wichita Falls at around 14 inches
  • Wild weather in Arkansas, Oklahoma, Texas, and Louisiana with severe weather and floods
  • and more!
  • Our email bag officer is continuing to handle the incoming messages from our listeners.

    From The Weather Center:

    WeatherBrains 101: This episode of 101 goes off the beaten path just a little to explore something called petrichor. This is a quick explanation about that refreshingly aromatic smell that comes with a light rain after a short dry spell and how it works.

    Listener Surveys: Okay, we continue to drive this topic into the ground, but we really do like to hear from you. Many thanks to everyone who has taken the time to fill out the Listener Survey. The survey takes just a minute or two to complete and provides us with an opportunity to learn where you are and hear your thoughts and comments on the show. Click here to take the survey.

    Web Sites from Episode 487:

    To subscribe to the brand new SkyWritings, an email newsletter from the WeatherBrains gang, click HERE.

    Loss of a Legend

    November, 1989, home video of JB Elliott by David Black

    Picks of the Week:

    Bill Murray – Weather story map

    Brian Peters – Water woes for Wichita Falls

    Kevin Selle – Boston Globe Cities in the Cloud

    James Spann – WeatherBrains audio archive

    SkyDavers Blog – The Fog Bank

    The WeatherBrains crew includes your host, James Spann, plus other notable geeks like Nate Johnson, Bill Murray, Aubrey Urbanowicz, Dr. John Scala, Rick Smith, Kevin Selle, and Brian Peters. They bring together a wealth of weather knowledge and experience for another fascinating netcast about weather.

    Categories: Weather

    Storms To Our West Due in Here Tomorrow Morning

    ABC 33/40 Weather Blog - Mon, 05/25/2015 - 22:35

    It has been a rough afternoon and night to the west of Alabama with a huge squall line producing tornadoes in Oklahoma, Texas, Arkansas, Mississippi and Louisiana. Tornadoes have threatened the Shreveport Metro, the Little Rock Metro and menaced Denison, Texas. A flash flood emergency has been in effect for Austin, Texas, where catastrophic flooding was reported.

    The day started with at least an EF1 and perhaps an EF2 in Amory, Mississippi around 9 a.m. The NWS in Memphis will make a final determination based on further evidence. There were actually two tornadoes from that same mesoscale convective vortex.

    The line of storms has been racing east all day and is crossing the Mississippi River. It will reach West Alabama around 6-8 a.m. It will be weaker than earlier today, but storms could still pack a punch. Additional showers and storms will form overnight it appears in areas along and east of I-59 and those could affect the storms’ ability to become intense tomorrow. But if the line is slower and we can get some heating ahead of it, instability levels will be higher and there is a chance some of the storms could become severe. The SPC Day Two Outlook has had Alabama in a slight risk, their standard base level severe weather threat forecast.

    Here is the High Resolution Rapid Refresh model depiction of the line overnight.

    The line will reach the Mississippi River after midnight and West Alabama around 5-6 a.m. probably getting to Birmingham around midmorning.

    So rest easy overnight but watch out tomorrow (especially West Alabama early) in case the storms are severe.

    Categories: Weather

    Occasional Showers/Storms

    ABC 33/40 Weather Blog - Mon, 05/25/2015 - 15:46

    **No afternoon Weather Xtreme video today; we will resume the “two a day” schedule tomorrow**

    RADAR CHECK: The stronger storms have shifted into East Alabama this afternoon…

    Storms in East Alabama are not severe, but they are producing a good bit of lighting and heavy rain as they move east. A few passing showers and storms remain possible through the night across our state as moist air stays in place.

    TOMORROW: SPC maintains the standard “slight risk” of severe weather for a decent part of North and Central Alabama, with a “marginal risk” all the way down to the coast…

    It remains to be seen if some of the high surface based instability forecasts can be reached; clouds could very well be locked in place much of the day, limiting the buoyancy of the atmosphere. Wind fields are not especially strong, so for the moment we remain rather unimpressed with the overall severe weather threat tomorrow, but if the sun breaks out during the morning, things could get active during the afternoon and evening hours. The rain tomorrow would be heavy at times, and some localized flash flooding issues are certainly possible.

    WEDNESDAY THROUGH FRIDAY: While showers and storms remain possible on these three days, they should be more scattered in nature, and mostly during the afternoon and evening hours. The sun will break out at times, and the high will be in the mid 80s.

    THE WEEKEND: Pretty much the same story for Saturday and Sunday… a mix of sun and clouds both days with the risk of scattered, mostly afternoon and evening showers and thunderstorms. Afternoon highs will remain mostly in the mid 80s. Same setup for early next week.

    GULF COAST WEATHER: About 3 to 5 hours of sunshine tomorrow with a few passing showers and storms likely from Panama City west to Gulf Shores, but then 7 to 9 hours of sunshine daily from Wednesday through the weekend with only widely scattered showers and thunderstorms each day. Highs will remain in the low 80s, and sea water temperatures are also generally in the low 80s.

    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. We will produce this week’s show tonight at 8:30 CT… you can watch it on “James Spann 24/7″ on cable systems around the state, or on the web here.

    CONNECT: You can find me on all of the major social networks…

    Facebook
    Twitter
    Google Plus
    Instagram

    Look for the next Weather Xtreme video here by 7:00 a.m. tomorrow….

    Categories: Weather

    Stronger Storms Over Northwest Alabama

    ABC 33/40 Weather Blog - Mon, 05/25/2015 - 12:01

    Here is the radar at noon:

    Strong thunderstorm continue late this morning over Northeast Mississippi into Northwest Alabama, from Monroe County MS into western Marion County in Alabama. An areal flood advisory was just posted for Marion County where minor flooding is likely. Others are moving through Lawrence and Limestone Counties.

    Further southwest, other strong storms are approaching Starkville MS.

    None of these storms are severe, but they are producing heavy rain and lightning as well as some gusty winds.

    A flash flood warning is now in effect for Monroe County MS, which includes Aberdeen and Amory. A likely tornado touched down in Amory around 9 a.m. It also caused damage in Smithville, a community hard hit on April 27, 2011.

    All of this activity is associated with the disturbance that is currently pushing into southern Tennessee. The southern end will continue to push slowly east into West and Northwest Alabama.

    To the south, showers and storms were passing just south of Selma moving northeast.

    Over South Alabama, widespread thunderstorms have developed and are pushing northward. They extend from Citronelle to Evergreen to Florala.

    All of this activity is forecast to increase in coverage and intensity through mid-afternoon as it all moves north. Although significant severe weather is not expected, we can rule out a few strong storms and there could even be a couple of warned storms. The main threat will be damaging winds.

    It is a day of outdoor activities across the state as we honor our veterans. Be alert to the weather through the afternoon. Have a source for weather warnings and keep an eye to the sky for storms that are below severe limits. They will produce deadly lightning, strong gusty winds and very heavy rains.

    Categories: Weather

    Possible Tornado/117 mph Wind Gust in Amory MS Earlier?

    ABC 33/40 Weather Blog - Mon, 05/25/2015 - 10:07

    LATE REPORT
    From the NWS Memphis: Smithville [Monroe Co, MS] public reports TORNADO at 09:03 AM CDT — smithville marina reports boats toppled over and buildings demolished. definite path of destruction.

    ORIGINAL POST
    That impressive little mesoscale convective vortex over Northeast Mississippi that prompted the tornado warning for the Amory and SMithville areas weakened as it moved into more stable air over Northwest Alabama and is no longer considered severe by the definition. It is still capable of strong gusty winds and is producing a fair amount of lightning and heavy rain.

    It extends along an arc from Tishomingo MS to Vina in Franklin County, Alabama to near Hamilton in Marion County. It is moving northeast at about 35 mph. The strongest winds are now approaching Hamilton. It will impact the rest of Franklin and Marion Counties over the next hour.

    Reports from Amory say that there is a considerable amount of damage in the downtown area from straight line winds or possibly a small tonado.

    Here is a Twitter image of what may have well been a tornado in Amory. There was certainly a strong velocity couplet in the area at the time.

    A home weather station in Amory reported a wind gust to 117 mph. While not official, that is still impressive.

    To the south, more strong storms are north of Columbus MS and will affect northern Lamar and Marion Counties.

    Further south, a severe thunderstorm warning is in effect for a small but strong cell in southwestern Noxubee County MS southwest of Macon. The warning includes Macon. This is going to affect Columbus in 90 minutes or so. It is part of an area of storms southwest of Columbus that will run into some higher instabilities as it translates eastward over the next couple of hours and pushes into West Alabama.

    Categories: Weather

    Could a Watch Be In Our Future?

    ABC 33/40 Weather Blog - Mon, 05/25/2015 - 09:19

    A potent little mesoscale convective vortex is rotating into Northwest Alabama early on this Memorial Day.

    There is very little instability ahead of the system, but it is ingesting unstable air from the south on a strong low level wind. So it is uncertain how long it will be able to maintain itself, but it has impressive rotation and is moving into an area with southeasterly surface winds, so there is a small tornado threat

    The SPC has just put out a statement that a tornado watch is possible if the feature holds together.

    The SPC does not have Alabama outlooked for severe weather today since the threat for severe weather is not significant or widespread enough to warrant a risk forecast. But a small feature like this can sometimes trigger localized severe weather and we will be monitoring it.

    There is a moderate risk today over southern Oklahoma and northern Texas into extreme southwestern Arkansas where the SPC feels that a very strong upper level disturbance approaching from the southwest.

    Categories: Weather

    Heads Up Lamar/Marion Counties

    ABC 33/40 Weather Blog - Mon, 05/25/2015 - 08:45

    8:45 a.m. Monday

    As expected, the first line of storms weakened as it crossed into Alabama overnight, but stronger storms are over Northeast Mississippi at this hour, poised to enter West Alabama within the hour.

    A severe thunderstorm warning is in effect for the Aberdeen area in NE Mississippi. This is for a pronounced bow echo Okolona to Aberdeen to West Point. Bow echoes are a part of a line of thunderstorms that “bows” out in front of the rest of the line. Along the arc of the bow, very strong winds are possible.

    This bow will target Lamar and Marion Counties within the hour, pushing near Bexar, Detroit, Sulligent and Hamilton.

    At the head of the bow, tornadoes can occur, and the NWS Memphis has also issued a tornado warning for the area around Amory and Smithville. The possible tornado is near Egypt, MS. On its current track it will impact Smithville MS and move toward Bexar in Marion County between 9:30-9:45 a.m.

    There has been a definite velocity couplet on the storm, indicating rotation and possible tornado.

    Categories: Weather

    Wet Weather Pattern Returns

    ABC 33/40 Weather Blog - Mon, 05/25/2015 - 07:00

    PATTERN CHANGE: After only about a third of an inch of rain for the entire month of May, showers/storms returned late yesterday afternoon, soaking parts of Central Alabama with over one inch. And, that moist air will stick around for a while with an upper trough to the west, meaning a good chance of occasional showers and storms.

    In fact, it is raining early this Memorial Day over parts of West Alabama…

    We might hold in the 70s all day today due to clouds and occasional showers. While a strong storm is possible this afternoon, organized severe weather is not expected through tonight.

    TOMORROW: SPC has defined the standard “slight” severe weather risk of much of North and Central Alabama, with a “marginal” risk for the entire state…

    No doubt we will deal with showers and storms at times tomorrow, there are really more questions than answers about severe weather. On the positive side for severe storms, the high resolution (4km) NAM ramps up surface based instability values over West Alabama to around 4,000 j/kg tomorrow afternoon. Not sure this is realistic since we will probably have clouds over the state much of the state. Higher storm relative helicity values are over the Tennessee Valley of far North Alabama, but overall wind fields look weak, and I am less than impressed with the risk of organized severe weather.

    WEDNESDAY: Not much change; moist air, upper trough to the west, so the sky will be mostly cloudy with occasional showers or storms… the high will be in the low 80s.

    THURSDAY/FRIDAY: Showers and storms should begin to thin out on these days, with the better chance during the afternoon and evening hours. Otherwise, a mix of sun and clouds both days with a high up in the mid 80s.

    THE WEEKEND: The last weekend of May looks pretty routine for this time of the year; partly sunny, warm days with the risk of scattered, mostly afternoon and evening showers and thunderstorms. Highs Saturday and Sunday will remain mostly in the mid 80s. The same pattern continues next week as June begins.

    AT THE BEACH: About 3 to 5 hours of sunshine from Panama City over to Gulf Shores today and tomorrow with a few passing showers and storms likely. Then, 8 to 10 hours of sunshine each day Wednesday through the weekend, with just a few widely scattered showers and storms around each day. Highs on the immediate coast will remain in the low 80s, and the sea water temperature early this morning at the Dauphin Island Sea Lab is 78 degrees.

    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. We will produce this week’s show tonight at 8:30 CT… you can watch it on “James Spann 24/7″ on cable systems around the state, or on the web here.

    CONNECT: You can find me on all of the major social networks…

    Facebook
    Twitter
    Google Plus
    Instagram

    Just one Weather Xtreme video today as we are on a holiday schedule, but I will post fresh forecast notes later this afternoon. Enjoy the day!

    Categories: Weather

    Who You Gonna Call? Drought Busters!

    ABC 33/40 Weather Blog - Sun, 05/24/2015 - 19:00

    We have of course been following with great interest the breaking of the drought in Oklahoma.

    Three months ago, 22.8% of the Sooner State was in Extreme or Exceptional Drought, the worst two categories. This week, that number had dropped to ZERO. One year ago, 81% of the state was in full out drought. Last week, that number dropped to 42% and another 5-10 inches of rain fell across much of western Oklahoma this week, which will really help.

    As of midnight, Oklahoma City had recorded 18.19 inches of rain in May, their wettest MONTH ever, not just wettest May. And another 0.50” has fallen today as they streak further into the record books. In fact, there is an outside chance they will get to 20 inches for the month!

    Categories: Weather

    Severe Thunderstorm Warning for Coosa County

    ABC 33/40 Weather Blog - Sun, 05/24/2015 - 18:40

    An isolated severe thunderstorm is over western Coosa County southwest of Rockford. It will pass just west of Rockford and move toward Stewartville.

    THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN BIRMINGHAM HAS ISSUED A

    * SEVERE THUNDERSTORM WARNING FOR…
    CENTRAL COOSA COUNTY IN EAST CENTRAL ALABAMA…

    * UNTIL 730 PM CDT

    * AT 639 PM CDT…A SEVERE THUNDERSTORM WAS LOCATED OVER WELONA…OR
    9 MILES SOUTHWEST OF ROCKFORD…MOVING NORTHEAST AT 20 MPH.

    HAZARD…60 MPH WIND GUSTS.

    SOURCE…RADAR INDICATED.

    IMPACT…EXPECT DAMAGE TO LIMBS AND TREES.

    * LOCATIONS IMPACTED INCLUDE…
    ROCKFORD…WEOGUFKA…BENTLEYVILLE…LYLE…SPEED…CREWSVILLE…
    MORIAH…DOLLAR…UNITY…PENTONVILLE…MITCHELL LAKE…HISSOP AND
    MITCHELL DAM.

    Categories: Weather

    Showers and Storms Moving in on Birmingham Metro

    ABC 33/40 Weather Blog - Sun, 05/24/2015 - 17:19

    Showers and storms that appeared they were going to stay mainly west of I-65 have gone rogue this afternoon and will impact a good bit of Shelby and Jefferson Counties over the next couple of hours.

    Strong storms are currently occurring over western Jefferson County over Maytown and Sylvan Springs as well as up near Forestdale. They are lined up along US-78 to Jasper, Carbon Hill and Eldridge.

    Others are over Northwest Alabama’s Marion County, mainly north of Hamilton, approaching Hackleburg.

    Lots of lightning, but not severe.

    Further south, a severe thunderstorm warning remain in effect for parts of Bibb and Chilton Counties. The strongest storm in this warned area is northeast of Maplesville, heading toward Jemison. Winds could reach severe limits with this storm (60 mph or greater). There is the possibility of some small hail as well.

    Trees and powerlines were just reported down in Maplesville.

    Additional storms are over eastern Bibb and western Chilton moving into southwestern Shelby Counties as well. Here is an image from the National Weather Service showing the wall cloud of these storms approaching their office at the Shelby County airport just a few minutes ago.

    These storms will affect the following areas:

    Montevallo and Calera immediately
    McCalla and Hoover Met by 5:20-5:25
    Alabaster and Pelham by 5:30
    Hoover/Ross Bridge by 5:45
    Vestavia by 5:50
    Homewood by 6 p.m.

    There is already some lightning around the Hoover Met now.

    Categories: Weather

    Severe Thunderstorm Warning Bibb/Chilton

    ABC 33/40 Weather Blog - Sun, 05/24/2015 - 16:28

    Strong storms are crossing US-82 between Maplesville and Centerville at this hour.

    They will affect Jemsion and Thorsby and eventually Montevallo and Caera.

    Storms have intensified west of Birmingham in the past few minutes. They are going to affect Hueywton, Concord and Rock Creek.

    The shower that caused a delay at the SEC Championship game at the Hoover Met has grown upscale and will be merging into the storms in western Jefferson County.

    THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN BIRMINGHAM HAS ISSUED A

    * SEVERE THUNDERSTORM WARNING FOR…
    SOUTHEASTERN BIBB COUNTY IN CENTRAL ALABAMA…
    WESTERN CHILTON COUNTY IN CENTRAL ALABAMA…

    * UNTIL 515 PM CDT

    * AT 427 PM CDT…A SEVERE THUNDERSTORM WAS LOCATED OVER LAWLEY…OR
    13 MILES SOUTHWEST OF JEMISON…MOVING NORTHEAST AT 40 MPH.

    HAZARD…60 MPH WIND GUSTS AND QUARTER SIZE HAIL.

    SOURCE…RADAR INDICATED.

    IMPACT…HAIL DAMAGE TO VEHICLES IS EXPECTED. EXPECT WIND DAMAGE
    TO ROOFS…SIDING AND TREES.

    * LOCATIONS IMPACTED INCLUDE…
    CALERA…JEMISON…THORSBY…MAPLESVILLE…CHILTON COUNTY MOTOR
    SPORTS PARK…BRIERFIELD IRONWORKS PARK…TALLADEGA NATIONAL
    FOREST…ASHBY…PARNELL…LAWLEY…RANDOLPH…ISABELLA…TRIO…
    CAMPBELL…MINOOKA PARK AND STANTON.

    Categories: Weather

    Severe Thunderstorm Warning: West Alabama

    ABC 33/40 Weather Blog - Sun, 05/24/2015 - 15:33

    The NWS in Birmingham has issued a severe thunderstorm warning for parts of these three West Alabama counties:

    LAMAR COUNTY IN WEST CENTRAL ALABAMA…
    PICKENS COUNTY IN WEST CENTRAL ALABAMA…
    WESTERN FAYETTE COUNTY IN WEST CENTRAL ALABAMA…

    * UNTIL 415 PM CDT

    As you can see, storms are lined up all along US-82 from Macedonia and Reform to Centreville.

    The strongest storm is approaching Reform from the south and will impact Millport and Vernon in Lamar County and possibly Fayette in Fayette County.

    Another warning affects areas south of and just including Columbus MS.

    It looks like all of this activity will remain west of the Birmingham area this afternoon.

    * AT 332 PM CDT…A SEVERE THUNDERSTORM WAS LOCATED NEAR REFORM…
    MOVING NORTH AT 40 MPH.

    HAZARD…60 MPH WIND GUSTS AND QUARTER SIZE HAIL.

    SOURCE…RADAR INDICATED.

    IMPACT…HAIL DAMAGE TO VEHICLES IS EXPECTED. EXPECT WIND DAMAGE
    TO ROOFS…SIDING AND TREES.

    * LOCATIONS IMPACTED INCLUDE…
    FAYETTE…VERNON…SULLIGENT…GORDO…REFORM…MILLPORT…
    CARROLLTON…PICKENSVILLE…KENNEDY…BELK…ETHELSVILLE…BLOOMING
    GROVE…LAMAR COUNTY AIRPORT…ASHCRAFT CORNER…BLUFF…BEDFORD…
    KIRK…LUBBUB…MCSHAN AND MELBORNE.

    Categories: Weather

    Showers and Storms Moving North Through West Alabama

    ABC 33/40 Weather Blog - Sun, 05/24/2015 - 15:04

    A warm humid airmass covers Alabama and the Deep South this afternoon. The cumulus field over Georgia was about as uniform and beautiful as you will ever see with fairly stable conditions in place over the Peach State. To the west over our state, there was more vertical development in clouds thanks to higher moisture levels, a little more upper level wind energy out ahead of the western trough and interactions with the outflow boundaries from last night’s Texas storms and the seabreeze front off the Gulf Coast.

    Showers and storms had fired over southeastern Mississippi and southwestern Alabama. These storms look like they will work northeastward, remaining mainly west of I-65 through 7-8 p.m. when they will move into Tennessee. They will reach the Tuscaloosa area between 4 and 5 p.m. with a good bit of lightning.

    Wind shear is virtually absent and mid level lapse rates are poor, so significant strong storms are not expected, but we can’t rule them out because there is a good bit of dry air aloft, which thunderstorms like in order to produce damaging winds

    Temperatures at we approach mid-afternoon are just above 80F in the I-20 corridor, limited by the cloud cover. The mercury will rise another couple of degrees before the day is out.

    Categories: Weather
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