ABC 33/40 Weather Blog

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The latest information on Alabama weather, tornadoes, hurricanes, winter storms, national weather headlines and the science of meteorology in general.
Updated: 4 hours 2 min ago

Big Summer Storms

Fri, 08/08/2014 - 16:03

An all new edition of the ABC 33/40 Weather Xtreme video is available in the player on the right sidebar of the blog. You can subscribe to the Weather Xtreme video on iTunes by clicking here.

STRONG TO SEVERE STORMS: Another day with very big summer thunderstorms across Alabama in scattered spots. A number of severe thunderstorm warnings have been required for North Alabama counties due to the potential for wet microbursts again today (localized areas of damaging straight line winds).

Storms are moving east/northeast, and all of them are producing lots of lightning, heavy rain, and gusty winds. They will slowly calm down late tonight.

THE ALABAMA WEEKEND: Moist, unstable air stays in place, and with a wavy, zonal flow the risk of showers and thunderstorms will continue. We will forecast scattered to numerous showers and thunderstorms tomorrow and Sunday; the best chance of rain will come during the afternoon and evening hours, but we can’t rule out a late night or morning shower. And, like today, some of the storms will be strong with gusty winds and lots of lightning. Highs for the weekend will be in the 88-92 degree range with a limited amount of sunshine both days.

NEXT WEEK: The chance of showers and storms will continue Monday and Tuesday, but the GFS continues to hint at drier air moving into North Alabama Wednesday thanks to an upper trough over the eastern third of the nation. This would mean lower humidity and cooler nights over the latter half of next week; we might make a run at lows down around 60 degrees early Thursday and Friday morning, with potential for upper 50s across the cooler valleys. Maybe even close to record lows again. See the Weather Xtreme video for the maps, graphics, and details.

GULF COAST WEATHER: About 6 to 8 hours of sunshine each day through early next week from Panama City over to Gulf Shores, with the usual risk of scattered showers and thunderstorms. Highs in the upper 80s on the immediate coast, with sea water temperatures mostly in the mid 80s.

TROPICS: The Atlantic basin remains very quiet, and tropical storm formation is not expected through early next week. The Pacific remains active; Tropical Storm Iselle is fading fast over Hawaii, but it did produce very heavy rain, some flooding, and tree and power line damage. Hurricane Julio will weaken and pass well north of the Hawaiian Islands this weekend.

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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My next Weather Xtreme video will be posted bright and early Monday morning by 7:00… Brian Peters will have the video updates tomorrow and Sunday. Enjoy the weekend!

Categories: Weather

Warnings for the Montgomery Area; Storms Elsewhere

Fri, 08/08/2014 - 15:46

Thunderstorms are increasing in coverage and intensity across Alabama in a soupy, unstable summertime airmass.

Storms in the Montgomery area have become severe and there is still a severe thunderstorm warning in effect for part of DeKalb County.

The NWS Birmingham issued a Severe Thunderstorm Warning for Elmore, Macon and Montgomery Counties till 4:30 PM CDT.

Storms are strongest over Northeast, South Central and West Central Alabama as you can see from this radar grab just before 3:40.

Additional strong storms are over Mississippi and will be entering Northwest Alabama soon.

Other storms are in the Birmingham area right now, but they are not especially heavy.

Categories: Weather

Severe Thunderstorm Warning

Fri, 08/08/2014 - 15:39

This is the text of a severe warning from the National Weather Service for part of the AlabamaWX.com coverage area. Standby for more details to be added to this post by our meteorologists.

WUUS54 KBMX 082038
SVRBMX
ALC051-087-101-082130-
/O.NEW.KBMX.SV.W.0107.140808T2038Z-140808T2130Z/

BULLETIN – IMMEDIATE BROADCAST REQUESTED
SEVERE THUNDERSTORM WARNING
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE BIRMINGHAM AL
338 PM CDT FRI AUG 8 2014

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN BIRMINGHAM HAS ISSUED A

* SEVERE THUNDERSTORM WARNING FOR…
SOUTHEASTERN ELMORE COUNTY IN EAST CENTRAL ALABAMA…
WEST CENTRAL MACON COUNTY IN SOUTHEAST ALABAMA…
NORTHEASTERN MONTGOMERY COUNTY IN SOUTH CENTRAL ALABAMA…

* UNTIL 430 PM CDT

* AT 338 PM CDT…THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE INDICATED A SEVERE
THUNDERSTORM CAPABLE OF PRODUCING DAMAGING WINDS IN EXCESS OF 60
MPH. THIS STORM WAS LOCATED NEAR AUBURN UNIVERSITY IN
MONTGOMERY…OR 6 MILES EAST OF MONTGOMERY…AND MOVING EAST AT 15
MPH.

* LOCATIONS IMPACTED INCLUDE…
MOUNT MEIGS…EMERALD MOUNTAIN…WAUGH…TYSONVILLE…
VICTORYLAND…SHORTER…BRASSELL AND WARE.

THIS INCLUDES…
INTERSTATE 85 EXIT NUMBERS 4 THROUGH 22…

WINDS OF 60 TO 70 MPH WILL BREAK LARGE TREE LIMBS AND CAUSE SOME
DAMAGE…ESPECIALLY TO SMALLER STRUCTURES.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS…

FOR YOUR PROTECTION…MOVE TO AN INTERIOR ROOM ON THE LOWEST FLOOR OF
YOUR HOME OR BUSINESS.

&&

TO REPORT SEVERE WEATHER…
CALL 1-800-856-0758 OR TWEET YOUR REPORT USING HASHTAG ALWX

LAT…LON 3259 8597 3234 8587 3229 8623 3243 8629
TIME…MOT…LOC 2038Z 252DEG 12KT 3238 8617

$$

77/GLEASON

Categories: Weather

Higher Rain Chances Ahead

Fri, 08/08/2014 - 06:10

An all new edition of the ABC 33/40 Weather Xtreme video is available in the player on the right sidebar of the blog. You can subscribe to the Weather Xtreme video on iTunes by clicking here.

BIG STORMS FOR SOME YESTERDAY: A number of Alabama communities saw big summer storms late yesterday, on what will probably be the hottest day of the summer for our state. A flash flood warning was needed for parts of Marshall County, and there was extensive tree and power line damage north of Gadsden atop Lookout Mountain, and on Sand Mountain near Boaz and Albertville due to wet microbursts.

THE DAYS AHEAD: A wavy, zonal flow will bring a series of waves into Alabama through early next week, meaning scattered to numerous showers and thunderstorms on a daily basis. The sky will be occasionally cloudy, and while the best chance of showers and storms will come during the afternoon and evening hours, we can’t totally rule out a late night or morning shower. Highs will drop into the 88-92 degree range through Sunday, considerably lower than the 99 degree high we saw in Birmingham yesterday.

For those planning outdoor events this weekend, due to the scattered nature of summer storms there is no way to tell you the exact start/stop times for rain at any given location, just be prepared for a shower or storm at any time. And, like yesterday, the storms will be pretty strong with potential for localized flooding and lots of lightning. But, the sun will be out at times, and the rain won’t be continuous.

We all know rain distribution in summer is not even, but on an average basis many Alabama communities will see two inches of rain between now and Wednesday.

LATE NEXT WEEK: The GFS is hinting that another summer “cold front” will move down into South Alabama, with potential for lower humidity and cooler nights for North Alabama by Thursday and Friday. We will have to wait and see on that idea. See the Weather Xtreme video for the maps, graphics, and more details.

GULF COAST WEATHER: About 6 to 8 hours of sunshine each day through early next week along the Gulf Coast from Panama City west to Gulf Shores with the usual risk of scattered thunderstorms. Highs will remain in the upper 80s, and the sea water temperature early this morning at the Dauphin Island Sea Lab is 86 degrees.

TROPICS: The Atlantic basin remains very quiet, but the Pacific is rocking and rolling. Iselle continues to weaken, and moved into the Big Island of Hawaii this morning as a tropical storm. Flooding remains the primary threat with this system…

And, to the east, Hurricane Julio will pass north of the Hawaiian Islands this weekend as it weakens. Again, see all the maps on the Weather Xtreme video.

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 4:00 this afternoon…. enjoy the day!

Categories: Weather

Heavy Thunderstorms Over Northeast Alabama

Thu, 08/07/2014 - 19:44

Heavy thunderstorms are over Northeast Alabama tonight. They are dumping torrential rains, producing intense lightning and gusty winds.

They are heaviest over Etowah County, with more heavy rain extending into Marshall and Calhoun Counties. Intense rains are falling just northeast of Gadsden. There may even be some hail there.

A flash flood warning was just issued for parts of Marshall County around Albertville and Boaz.

Everything is moving northeast.

Other showers and storms are over the southern portion of WEst central Alabama down around Demoplis and Thomaston and Pine Hill.

Categories: Weather

A Few Showers This Afternoon, A Few Showers Tonight

Thu, 08/07/2014 - 13:41

Showers formed late this morning over West Central Alabama, extending back into Mississippi along the leading edge of a southwesterly flow aloft ahead of an upper level disturbance near St. Louis.

The showers extend from southern Tuscaloosa County back through Greene and Hale and into Sumter Counties. The activity extends eastward across South Central Alabama from Dallas County eastward through northern Montgomery and Elmore Counties to Clay, Randolph and Lee Counties. The activity is widely scattered at this time.

The graphic shows heat index values at this hour. They are not quite to the advisory criteria of 105F, but they are close in spots. Note that the 104F at Jasper is a suspect value.

Temperatures are in the middle 90s, ranging from 96F at Anniston to 95F at Calera and Birmingham. The temperature at Tuscaloosa peaked at 95F before nearby showers cooled the air by 10 degrees.

The main lobe of vorticity is pushing through western Mississippi and this hour. It will bring a round of scattered showers and storms to western and northwestern Alabama this evening. Here is the 4km NAM Simulated Radar Reflectivity for 9 p.m. tonight.

Categories: Weather

Hurricane Hunters in Hawaii

Thu, 08/07/2014 - 11:14

The Hurricane Hunters are in Hawaii, but they are not on vacation.

The 53rd Weather Reconnaissance Squadron (Air Force Reserve Hurricane Hunters) have deployed two lanes to Joint Base Pearl Harbor to monitor Hurricane Iselle as it makes landfall tonight and to monitor Hurricane Julio as it passes north of the islands this weekend.

I always love the Google Earth depictions of the Hurricane Hunter missions, especially since they look like a Lite Brite, a toy from some of our childhoods.

But these two storms mean business and the Hawaiian Islands are battening down.

If Iselle makes landfall as a hurricane on the Big Island tonight, it will be the first landfall of a hurricane since Iniki in 1992. Only three storms have made landfall as full hurricanes in Hawaii since 1950.

The big island has not had a direct landfall from a full hurricane since modern records began in 1950.

Here is the forecast track for Iselle, showing landfall between 2-3 a.m. CDT, which is 9-10 p.m. Hawaiian time.

Hurricane warnings are in effect for the big island of Hawaii, with tropical storm warnings for the rest of the islands. Flash flood watches are in effect for all of the islands.

The storm is unusual in that it has battled an environment full of dry air and decent shear to remain a hurricane. Here is an enhanced satellite image of Iselle.

In a bit, we will take a look at the impact being expected in the islands as Iselle approaches and what affects Julio will have over the weekend.

Categories: Weather

Becoming More Unsettled

Thu, 08/07/2014 - 07:14

An all new edition of the ABC 33/40 Weather Xtreme video is available in the player on the right sidebar of the blog. You can subscribe to the Weather Xtreme video on iTunes by clicking here.

While the weather pattern has been somewhat nondescript for the last several days, that is changing as moisture values gradually increase and a weak frontal boundary approaches the Tennessee River Valley from the north. To add to the forecast challenge, a northwesterly flow pattern could produce thunderstorm clusters over the Central Plains with the potential for those clusters to invade the Southeast US. There is not a great deal of skill in timing these events, so we’ll have to maintain a close watch on radar and storm development and adjust our forecasts as needed.

For today, hot once again with the potential for isolated showers and thunderstorms. With moisture creeping up, heat indices will likely reach the 100 to 105 range, so anyone with outdoor plans should be sure to stay hydrated and consider cutting back on the physical exertion.

While the Atlantic tropical basin is quiet again, the same can’t be said for the Pacific. Hawaii is under a hurricane warning with not just one storm to contend with. See the Xtreme for the detailed graphics.

Beach goers will enjoy a mostly sunny day on the Alabama and Northwest Florida beaches with highs in the upper 80s. Isolated showers possible today and the shower potential goes up for the weekend – but not expecting a complete washout. Sea water temperature running in the 82 to 84 range along the coast.

The upper air flow becomes increasingly northwesterly for the Southeast US with time, so our weather becomes more unsettled. I expect to see shower chances and coverage go up Friday and Saturday and perhaps stay up some into Sunday. Best chance for getting some rain appears to be Saturday. While I hate to see that for the weekend, we really could use some of Mother Nature’s rain to stem the dryness of the last week.

The northwesterly flow also opens us to the potential for mesoscale convective systems – MCSs – with weak disturbances that develop across the Central Plains and travel long distances. Timing these events is difficult, so recognizing the pattern and maintaining a watchful eye for this development will be necessary.

The overall upper air pattern does not see much change as we head into a good portion of next week. This is good news for us since it should keep any extreme heat away with highs mainly in the lower 90s with a chance of daily showers driven primarily by afternoon heating.

Looking at voodoo country, and we see clearly why James has given it that nickname! The pattern flipped yesterday and it has flipped again today back to what we’ve been seeing with a fairly strong trough positioned over the eastern US. As I mentioned yesterday, confidence was higher with consistency in the longer range models, but confidence has fallen off a good deal with these large differences from run to run.

And you can follow news and weather updates from ABC 33/40 on Twitter here. Stay in the know by following the whole gang – here’s the list…

James Spann Charles Daniel Bill Murray Brian Peters E-Warn (AL wx watches/warnings)

The next Weather Xtreme Video should be posted first thing on Friday morning. Enjoy your day and Godspeed.

-Brian-

Categories: Weather