A BIT UNUSUAL: Yesterday marked our 7th consecutive day with an afternoon high below 90 degrees. In case you were wondering, that's our longest such streak in July since July 1979 - pretty remarkable if you think about it. We're forecasting a high of 91 degrees today, but if we can get a stray storm over the official reporting station this afternoon, there's a small chance we could potentially extend the streak.
SMALL RAIN RISK TODAY: A few hit and miss showers and/or thunderstorms are in the cards today; we'll go with a 30% coverage of showers this afternoon. Some will have rain, some will have thunder and lightning, but many will stay dry.
FRONT APPROACHES: The upper air pattern is very unusual for July, with a large trough over the eastern U.S. That upper pattern will push a front towards Alabama tomorrow, which will mean an increase in the coverage of rain. As the front moves into central/southern Alabama, it will slowly stall out. Exactly WHERE it stalls is very important because that's where the best rain chance will remain.
COMPLEX SCENARIO: The rain chance on Friday and Saturday won't be as easy as a single number. On Friday, much of central Alabama will be dry, while south Alabama has a decent coverage of scattered showers and storms. Overall, we'll say a 20% coverage of rain, mainly in the southern counties. A similar outlook works for Saturday - most of central Alabama will be dry, but lingering storm chances will exist in the southern counties, south of Troy and Greenville.
WEATHER RADIO PROGRAMMING: Our July weather radio tour continues tomorrow as we head down to Opp. We're visiting Opp City Hall, 101 North Main Street, from 10:30 to 2:30. We will program your weather radio to sound for your county, and if you don't have one, you can buy one at a discounted price. We will see you in Opp tomorrow.
WALMART WEATHER AWARENESS DAY: Saturday, 10:00 am - 3:00 PM at the Chantilly Walmart, join WSFA 12 along with Montgomery County and state EMA folks, Police and fire department reps from Montgomery and Pike Road, local utility companies, the Humane Society and The Red Cross for Walmart Weather Awareness Day. Stormtracker 12 will be there. Come by and say hi!
-Josh Johnson, Doppler 12 StormVision Meteorologist
Facebook: Josh Johnson WSFA
RAIN FALLING NOW: A large mass of rain is rolling across central Alabama this morning; mainly north of a line from Union Springs to Montgomery to Selma. The rain is actually moving from east to west. This is somewhat unusual and is happening because of an upper low located to our south. The flow of air around that low is counter-clockwise, so that's pulling rain from east to west this morning. These showers will continue for much of the morning.
AFTERNOON STORMS? The initial area of rain will push westward into Mississippi around midday. The development of our typical hit or miss afternoon showers and storms will then begin, primarily in south Alabama. That'll be the preferred zone for storm development because the lack of much rain there this morning will leave more energy for afternoon rain. In central Alabama, we can't rule out some scattered afternoon rain, but the best rain chance is actually in the morning/midday timeframe.
TOMORROW AND BEYOND: Scattered showers and storms linger in our forecast for the foreseeable future. It's worth noting that many of our computer models greatly reduce the coverage of rain tomorrow. However, this pattern has overachieved as a rain producer; our computer models (and we humans, too) have underestimated the rain the past few days. So, with that in mind, we'll maintain a better-than-usual rain risk tomorrow and see how it plays out.
IN THE TROPICS: Tropical Depression 2 has formed in the central Atlantic - it's forecast to maintain its intensity for a couple of days, then weaken as it moves into a high-shear environment. We'll watch, but we don't see much potential for TD2 to become a problem.
WEATHER RADIO DAY: We're heading to Opp on Thursday! We'll be at City Hall from 10:30-2:30 selling and programming Midland NOAA Weather Radios - if you don't have one, this is a great chance to stop by and pick one up. We'll program it to sound only for your county. StormTracker 12 will also be there and available for tours. See you in Opp!
-Josh Johnson, Doppler 12 StormVision Meteorologist Facebook: Josh Johnson WSFA Twitter: @JoshWeather
RAIN RISK LINGERS: Scattered showers and pockets of thunder will linger across Alabama today; in fact, we already have a few downpours roaming around Alabama this morning. The coverage of rain today will average out to around 40% - higher in south/east Alabama, lower in west/central Alabama.
MORE HUMIDITY: Unlike last week, this week will feel like the middle of July. Plenty of heat, plenty of humidity and, at times, a lot of sunshine, too. Afternoon highs each day will warm into the lower 90s with heat index values nearing 100° at times.
MORE OF THE SAME: As the pattern remains unsettled, we'll continue to deal with a risk of rain each day through the weekend. No all-day rains, and there will be days where your specific location stays dry. But, for planning purposes, be ready for a quick shower or storm; they are possible each day.
-Josh Johnson, Doppler12 StormVision Meteorologist
It's been a very productive weekend from a weather perspective. Widespread coverage of showers and storms may have put a damper on outdoor plans. But many backyards got a solid drink of water, helping ease the burden of what has been a fairly dry period around here. We're still dealing with a weak nearly stationary frontal boundary draped across Alabama. That boundary has helped spark showers over the last few days and will still be a factor Monday...
TONIGHT: While the coverage and intensity of rain will diminish as day becomes night, I have a hunch we'll still have a few stragglers around. Our environment remains very moist & soupy...so fog will be possible across both central and southern counties. Lows in the lower 70s.
MONDAY: Our pesky frontal boundary will hang around Monday. It will be a player in our forecast, but not a major one.
The boundary should be draped slightly more southward. While our entire viewing area will stand a shot for isolated showers and storms through the day, enhanced coverage will lie closer to the front itself, favoring areas east of I-65 and south of I-85.
We'll keep rain chances around 20% in central Alabama and pop those up to 40% across the south/southeast. There will be pockets of sunshine mixed in with those scattered showers and storms. Sunshine should help temperatures warm into the 90-92 degree range...slightly cooler where clouds/rain play more of a role.
REST OF THE WEEK: It's a pretty ho-hum week ahead. Temperatures in the lower 90s with scattered showers and storms primarily during afternoons will set the stage for a typical Summer workweek.
Another frontal boundary will sag into Alabama toward mid-late week. We'll have to see how far south that front can make it before stalling out. But it should help keep the threat of a few storms in the picture.
Models yesterday were really cranking up the heat late week into the weekend, but have backed off a bit today. We'll gradually bump up temps toward the weekend, but will have to monitor trends to see if we need to adjust upward.
TROPICS: All is quiet across the Gulf of Mexico with no active tropical activity and nothing expected in the short term.
A weak tropical wave is being monitored across the eastern Atlantic. Conditions with time are expected to remain largely unfavorable for development, and this wave has a 10% chance of tropical formation over the next 5 days.
-Doppler12 StormVision Meteorologist Eric Snitil-
How quickly things change. Last week, we're nice & cool with our Summertime humidity long gone. Today, the Gulf of Mexico flexes it's muscle. A very soupy and sticky atmosphere today presented the perfect environment for showers and thunderstorms to develop. A pesky system and associated frontal boundary will hang around the area through Sunday, allowing our Saturday weather to lag into the Sunday forecast...
REST OF THE EVENING: Radar is not overly lit up right now, but pockets of showers continue to press from west to east. If you're headed out, don't expect a constant rain. But plan to dodge scattered raindrops through the night.
A weather metric we use to assess moisture content in the atmosphere is something called precipitable water. Take a column of air in the atmosphere and ring out all the moisture (like a sponge). The liquid water that precipitates out gives you a number...the precipitable water. Values across central and south Alabama are at or exceed 2", which is plenty high to keep wet weather in the forecast.
Unlike a typical Summer night where the sun goes down and showers die out, we'll keep scattered activity around through the night.
SUNDAY: A slow moving frontal boundary will provide the necessary lift to tap into all this moisture.
Here's the deal with that front. Behind it...it's drier. Ahead of it, it's sticky & wet. But it's getting behind that front that is the issue. We think that front will hang around central Alabama Sunday. That means a risk for rain continues along and ahead of it.
A much drier day up into Tuscaloosa & Birmingham, but it's a repeat of Saturday for our region. Don't expect a constant all day rain, but scattered showers and storms will persist throughout much of the day. Best rain chances will fall south of I-85 and east of I-65. Given the clouds & rain around, highs should be suppressed into the 80s.
THE WEEK AHEAD: Highs remain under control through midweek as scattered rain chances continue.
Later in the week, the heat returns to Alabama. Temps will rise into the middle 90s by week's end with signs of perhaps upper 90s into next weekend. Summer heat is lurking!
-Doppler12 StormVision Meteorologist Eric Snitil-