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Category: Alabama’s Weather

Sunday Update

| 10:36 am April 20, 2014

The tale of two skies continues across the state of Alabama on this Easter Sunday.


Skies are cloudy south of I-85 and US-80 over the southeastern part of the state when some moisture is riding up and over the high pressure over southern Alabama. Funny thing, the moisture is coming from an unusual direction: the northeast. The culprit is the large low off the coast of the Carolinas. Elsewhere, skies are a bright blue.

The closest rain to Alabama is some showers along the Carolina Coast. Just a little further away, we find some showers and storms over Texas and Oklahoma ahead of our next weather system.

Temperatures this afternoon across Central Alabama will be in the 76-79F range with a few readings touching 80F as the clouds stay well to the south and gradually erode. Lows tonight will be near 50F.

Gorgeous Easter Sunday

| 7:10 am April 20, 2014

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.

As Ryan Stinnett noted in the forecast this morning, you could not order a better day than what we expect to see across Central Alabama today. Sunshine will be in full supply and we expect the afternoon highs to climb into the middle and upper 70s with comfortably low humidity to add to the wonderful conditions.

Monday will be a transition day as we see clouds increase ahead of the next front approaching the area from the northwest. That front should move into and across Central Alabama Tuesday bringing us showers and perhaps a little thunder. Moisture appears to be somewhat limited, so while the likelihood of showers is very high, the scattered nature of them will mean that some folks won’t get wet at all and some could see a half inch of rain. The surface and upper level low that moved off the Southeast US coast yesterday will help to keep a strong southerly return flow from developing thus limiting the amount of moisture available. But moisture will be sufficient for scattered showers as precipitable water values climb close to 1.5 inches.

Cool 500 millibar temperatures on Tuesday could help to produce thunderstorms with hail. Instability values are somewhat marginal for really strong updrafts, so I do not expect to see any organized severe weather.

The upper trough moves quickly east allowing an upper ridge to build into the eastern third of the country. This will dry us out for Wednesday and Thursday. But while the air mass will be drier, we won’t see any appreciable lowering of the temperatures with a limited northwesterly flow that does not go very far north, so no real air mass change.

The big forecast problem will be dealing with the end of the week and into the weekend. The GFS keeps the ridge fairly strong so that the traveling weather systems are expected to remain well north of us. That puts us into a weakened pattern where the fronts will drag into the area with sufficient moisture for scattered showers driven primarily by daytime heating. While the best chance for showers appears to come on Friday, the front becomes stationary in the area keeping us susceptible to scattered showers into the weekend. Without a strong push, the front is not likely to bring much in the way of an air mass change so temperatures will remain warm with highs around 80 or so.

Looking out into voodoo country, the GFS had a really strong Omega ridge developing at the end of April. While the pattern remains similar, the latest GFS run is more realistic in the look of the ridge. A strong upper trough approaches the eastern US on May 1, which could signal a round of severe storms for the Southeast US. By May 5th, the GFS shows the westerlies well north of us putting us into the same issue of fronts dragging into the area without much strength.

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 Brian Peters
Bill Murray E-Warn (AL wx watches/warnings)

Thanks for staying tuned to the Weather Xtreme Video. I’ll be handling the weather duties on ABC 3340 at 5 and 10 pm today, so catch the latest news and weather forecast then. James Spann will be back with the next video first thing Monday morning. Happy Easter and Godspeed.


Early Afternoon Update

| 1:31 pm April 19, 2014

Another fascinating look at the storm system to our southeast today. The surface low and upper-level low are both located on the Georgia/Florida line this afternoon. Clouds and rain continue to fall in many areas to our east with this system. The last few satellite images it appears to look like the clouds are bubbling up over southeastern Georgia. These are actually thunderstorms that have developed in the area and the strong updrafts in the storms are allowing the cloud tops to make it higher than the lower cumulus and stratus clouds affecting most areas.

For us in Alabama, if you are west of Interstate 65, there is hardly a cloud in the sky as beautiful blues skies are allowing an abundance of sunshine through. East of Interstate 65, there is a mix of sun and clouds, which becomes more overcast the farther east you go. There are still a few very light showers showing up on radar this afternoon east of I-65 and south of I-20.


Where the clouds and rain are, it is quite a cool and raw day. Temps are staying in the 50s across much of Georgia and the Carolinas, with even some 40s in North Carolina. Where the sun is out over most of Alabama, temps are well into the 70s and it has turned out to be a beautiful spring Saturday. At last check I noticed the temperature at Auburn was 59 degrees verses the 77 in Tuscaloosa.

For the rest of today, these lows will continue to slowly shift off to the east and will gradually allow skies to clear over eastern portions of the state later this evening.

4-19-2014 1-08-18 PM

A Mix of Sun and Clouds

| 10:28 am April 19, 2014


Many areas of Alabama are seeing a mix of sun and clouds late this morning thanks to the upper-level low that is currently over Georgia. There is quite a bit of sunshine across much of Central Alabama this morning as well as a brisk north wind in most locations.

Up and down the western side of the state, there is nearly full sunshine along Highway 43 from Muscle Shoals to Mobile. Along the Interstate 65 corridor in Central Alabama, clouds are moving towards the south and are thinning out slowly. The main area of clouds over the state is confined to the southeastern corner of the state. Locations in and around Dothan, Eufaula, Phenix City, Troy, Hartford, and Fort Rucker continue to see mostly cloudy and overcast conditions.

As we head through the rest of today, we will continue to see the clouds slowly clearing out of the state as the upper-level low pulls away from the region. Most locations will see mostly sunny skies later today. Then for Easter Sunday, nothing but sunshine and blue skies are expected. .

Rainfall Summary

| 7:56 am April 19, 2014

Here is a summary of the rainfall from a variety of reporting stations for the last 48 hours as prepared by the National Weather Service in Birmingham. As you can see from the observed totals, there was a pretty steep gradient in rainfall amounts from Jefferson County southeastward toward Dothan with Barbour County coming in with totals approaching 5 inches.


NOUS44 KBMX 191205

704 AM CDT SAT APR 19 2014


LOCATION                       AMOUNT    TIME/DATE       LAT/LON

2 NE PRATTVILLE                2.17 IN   0647 AM 04/19   32.49N/86.42W
2 SE PRATTVILLE                1.63 IN   0655 AM 04/19   32.44N/86.43W
1 NNW PRATTVILLE               1.47 IN   0643 AM 04/19   32.48N/86.45W

CLAYTON                        4.66 IN   0600 AM 04/19   31.88N/85.48W
WEEDON FIELD AIRPORT           3.84 IN   0658 AM 04/19   31.95N/85.13W
7 SSW FLORENCE MARINA STATE PA 3.84 IN   0640 AM 04/19   32.01N/85.09W

WEST BLOCTON                   0.77 IN   0700 AM 04/19   33.12N/87.13W
1 ESE BRENT                    0.65 IN   0648 AM 04/19   32.94N/87.16W
6 SW CENTREVILLE               0.61 IN   0600 AM 04/19   32.87N/87.24W
1 NNE BRENT                    0.59 IN   0626 AM 04/19   32.96N/87.17W

7 WSW UNION SPRINGS            2.12 IN   0641 AM 04/19   32.10N/85.83W

ANNISTON ARPT ASOS             0.69 IN   0653 AM 04/19   33.59N/85.86W
1 ENE BYNUM                    0.56 IN   0642 AM 04/19   33.62N/85.94W
2 E FORT MCCLELLAN             0.45 IN   0646 AM 04/19   33.72N/85.76W

4 NE THORSBY                   0.59 IN   0641 AM 04/19   32.96N/86.67W

3 NE LINEVILLE                 1.00 IN   0653 AM 04/19   33.35N/85.72W
2 ENE ASHLAND                  0.96 IN   0631 AM 04/19   33.28N/85.80W

2 W HEFLIN                     0.58 IN   0614 AM 04/19   33.65N/85.63W

SELMA                          0.58 IN   0530 AM 04/19   32.41N/87.02W

2 S TALLASSEE                  2.02 IN   0644 AM 04/19   32.50N/85.89W

1 WSW LEEDS                    0.87 IN   0655 AM 04/19   33.54N/86.57W
2 NE HOOVER                    0.63 IN   0651 AM 04/19   33.40N/86.80W
VESTAVIA HILLS                 0.41 IN   0647 AM 04/19   33.43N/86.78W
1 WNW HUEYTOWN                 0.22 IN   0630 AM 04/19   33.45N/87.02W
BIRMINGHAM ARPT ASOS           0.20 IN   0653 AM 04/19   33.57N/86.75W
1 NW TRUSSVILLE                0.18 IN   0647 AM 04/19   33.65N/86.62W
3 NE FAIRFIELD                 0.15 IN   0615 AM 04/19   33.52N/86.88W
4 NNE PINSON-CLAY-CHALKV       0.13 IN   0654 AM 04/19   33.74N/86.64W

6 WNW VERNON                   0.02 IN   0650 AM 04/19   33.79N/88.21W

12 SE AUBURN                   2.98 IN   0500 AM 04/19   32.45N/85.37W
AUBURN                         2.51 IN   0655 AM 04/19   32.62N/85.43W
3 NNE AUBURN                   2.01 IN   0646 AM 04/19   32.63N/85.47W
2 NW OPELIKA                   1.80 IN   0650 AM 04/19   32.68N/85.40W

9 ESE NOTASULGA                2.22 IN   0626 AM 04/19   32.48N/85.56W

DEMOPOLIS                      0.20 IN   0652 AM 04/19   32.52N/87.84W

6 SW MONTGOMERY                1.99 IN   0800 PM 04/18   32.26N/86.22W
MONTGOMERY DANNELLY FIELD      1.94 IN   0653 AM 04/19   32.30N/86.41W
5 E MONTGOMERY                 1.93 IN   0653 AM 04/19   32.35N/86.19W

9 WNW MAPLESVILLE              0.74 IN   0641 AM 04/19   32.83N/87.04W

TROY MUNICIPAL APT             1.85 IN   0653 AM 04/19   31.78N/85.95W

2 E ROANOKE                    1.68 IN   0646 AM 04/19   33.14N/85.33W

HURTSBORO                      2.84 IN   0645 AM 04/19   32.24N/85.42W

SHELBY COUNTY AIRPORT          1.18 IN   0653 AM 04/19   33.18N/86.78W
1 SE HELENA                    0.86 IN   0653 AM 04/19   33.27N/86.83W
1 WNW HELENA                   0.79 IN   0655 AM 04/19   33.30N/86.87W
1 S HELENA                     0.72 IN   0655 AM 04/19   33.27N/86.86W
3 N CHELSEA                    0.69 IN   0652 AM 04/19   33.37N/86.64W

...ST. CLAIR...
2 SSW MARGARET                 0.22 IN   0558 AM 04/19   33.66N/86.49W

1 SSW LIVINGSTON               0.26 IN   0530 AM 04/19   32.57N/88.19W

1 ENE TALLADEGA                0.79 IN   0626 AM 04/19   33.44N/86.08W

8 NE VANCE                     0.30 IN   0650 AM 04/19   33.27N/87.16W
OLIVER LOCK AND DAM            0.20 IN   0400 AM 04/19   33.21N/87.59W
TUSCALOOSA REGIONAL AIRPORT    0.20 IN   0653 AM 04/19   33.22N/87.61W
2 NE HOLT                      0.20 IN   0600 AM 04/19   33.25N/87.45W
12 S BERRY                     0.12 IN   0530 AM 04/19   33.48N/87.60W
14 N BROOKWOOD                 0.12 IN   0530 AM 04/19   33.46N/87.35W

2 ENE JASPER                   0.04 IN   0655 AM 04/19   33.86N/87.24W




Not Your Typical Spring

| 7:38 am April 19, 2014

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.

The overall weather pattern continues to be an active one, but I sure would not classify this month as your typical April! The high temperature at the Birmingham Shuttlesworth International Airport yesterday barely made it out of the 50s with a 61 which is 14 degrees below our seasonal average for this date. The low for the day was only 1 degree above, so we saw very little diurnal change in the temperature. Plus we got a bit more rain bringing us to a total which is nearly 4 inches above the 30-year average rainfall for the month – with 11 days still left to go.

The surface low along with the upper level cold core low which brought us the soaking rain yesterday continues to bring rain to much of the eastern half of Alabama this morning. Both lows should continue to push eastward, so we should see a slow decrease in the light rain which is now falling over areas generally east of Interstate 65. Temperatures will be problematic with lower 70s possible from Birmingham westward while areas east of Birmingham could remain shrouded in clouds holding temperatures in the 60s.

Surface high pressure will fill in behind the surface and upper lows on Sunday bringing us a beautiful Easter Sunday. We’ll see a few late morning and afternoon clouds, but the sunshine will feel good with temperatures climbing into the middle 70s for most of us.

Monday will be a transitional day with clouds on the increase ahead of the next upper trough and surface cold front. The front should pass through Central Alabama on Tuesday bringing us the next good chance of showers. The afternoon highs should reach the upper 70s. The front should move through briskly as the upper trough moves quickly off the East Coast and we come under ridging aloft for Wednesday and Thursday. Yet another strong upper trough approaches Alabama on Thursday and Friday bringing another cold front into the picture. Timing of this system seems to befuddle the models as the GFS has continued to oscillate back and forth between Friday and Saturday on the frontal passage and attendant rain chances. The GFS is also more aggressive with the rain chances and the amounts than the European, so the forecast remains somewhat fluid at the moment. But whether it is Friday or Saturday, it looks like we’ll have a reasonably good chance at some showers before clearing out for next Sunday. Temperatures appear to be seasonal with highs in the upper 70s and morning lows mainly in the 50s.

Looking into voodoo country, I’d describe the model solutions as complex. Another shot at rain comes around the 29th and then the GFS goes off the scale with a huge Omega block ridge situated along the Mississippi River. The ridge is so strong it does seem exaggerated, so my confidence in the solution is pretty low. The Omega ridge pattern evolves by May 4th with a trough undercutting the huge ridge. Definitely a stay tuned on this one situation.

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 Ashley Brand
J. B. Elliott Bill Murray Brian Peters
E-Warn (AL wx watches/warnings)

I’ll be handling the weekend weather duties on ABC 3340 this weekend, so be sure to check in with our 10 pm newscast tonight for the latest forecast on your weather. The 10 pm newscast will actually come a little late due to special programming on ABC. I expect to have the next Weather Xtreme Video posted first thing on Easter morning. Godspeed.


An Evening Update

| 7:48 pm April 18, 2014

It has been a rainy, cloudy and cool day across Central Alabama, with a chilly easterly breeze thrown in for good measure. Highs in the I-20 corridor were generally in the upper 50s. The high in Tuscaloosa was 60F. When it was raining, it was even cooler, with the mercury falling back into the lower 50s. It never got out of the 40s on Mount Cheaha, Alabama’s highest point.

Rainfall amounts were generally light across our part of the state, including .20″ at Tuscaloosa and 0.19″ at Birmingham. 0.52″ has fallen at Anniston through 7 p.m., and it was still raining.

Click to enlarge.

Click to enlarge.

While rainfall amounts over North Central Alabama were light today, it was a different story to the south, as moisture from the Gulf rode up an over a dome of high pressure extending down from New England and the Mid-Atlantic. Montgomery got over an inch and a half (1.62″), but nearer the coast, amounts were dramatically higher. Pensacola picked up nearly four inches of rain and Destin over inches. Florala, on the Alabama/Florida border picked up over five inches! Flooding was reported in numerous spots across Walton County, Florida, just over the border between Florala and DeFuniak Springs. All in all, it was not a good day to be driving to Destin on US-331. Beachgoers will encounter improving conditions today and fine weather Sunday and Monday.

At 7:45 p.m., light to moderate rain continues over the eastern part of Alabama, with the heaviest precipitation over Randolph, Chambers and eastern Lee Counties. It was raining moderately in Tennant and Roanoke.

We will be tracking a developing upper level low along the Louisiana/Mississippi border as it moves east tonight. It could increase rainfall again over Central Alabama during the overnight hours, but there is a lot of uncertainty in that between the short term models. Lows will be near 50F.

Eastern Alabama will have clouds tomorrow and a chance of a few showers because of the effect of that upper low. Western areas (places like Tuscaloosa, Hamilton and Jasper will experience a good supply of sunshine. I-65 communities from Cullman to Birmingham to Clanton will be in the transition zone. Areas west of I-65 will warm well into the 70s Saturday afternoon, eastern areas will be in the 60s.

Saturday night lows will be near 50F, so sunrise services will be mostly clear with a little fog, but dry and cool with readings in the upper 40s to near 50F. Afternoon readings Sunday will be in the middle 70s across the area.

Full Sunshine By Sunday

| 3:19 pm April 18, 2014

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.

RADAR CHECK: The bulk of the rain in Alabama this afternoon (as of 2:30 p.m.) is east of a line from Gadsden to Clanton to Monroeville…

Screen Shot 2014-04-18 at 2.27.21 PM

Temperatures are below forecast, holding in the 50s in many places across North/Central Alabama. We should be in the mid 70s here in mid April.

TONIGHT/TOMORROW: Clouds will hang tough over Alabama tonight, and rain will continue in areas south and east of Birmingham. Then, during the day tomorrow, the weather will vary greatly across Alabama… your conditions will all depend on where you live.

For far West and North Alabama… places like Muscle Shoals, Fayette, Tuscaloosa, and Vernon, the sky should become mostly sunny during the day and the high will be in the low 70s. However, over Central and East Alabama, clouds will hang tough much of the day and a little light rain and drizzle is possible. Where clouds linger, highs will be in the 60s.

Easter Sunday will be mostly sunny with a high well into the 70s.

NEXT WEEK: Monday still looks warm and dry… a few showers are possible Tuesday with a weak surface front, but nothing heavy and no severe weather. Then, an upper ridge will bring the warmest weather so far this year Wednesday through Friday with low to mid 80s.

A vigorous storm system will being the risk of strong to severe storms to parts of the Great Plains by Wednesday or Thursday of next week, but for now it looks like the main energy associated with this will pass well to the north of Alabama. See the Weather Xtreme video for the maps, graphics, and details.

AT THE BEACH: Rain is likely tonight in the Florida Panhandle; some flooding is possible. The weather begins to improve with clearing late in the day tomorrow or tomorrow night, and Sunday will be sunny. Highs on the immediate coast will be in the 60s today, with low 70s tomorrow and Sunday. A pretty decent part of next week will be dry, although a few widely scattered showers could show up Tuesday. The sea water temperature at the Dauphin Island Sea Lab this afternoon is 65 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.

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I had a great time today visiting the 3rd graders at Englewood Elementary in Tuscaloosa… be looking for them on the Pepsi KIDCAM on ABC 33/40 News at 5:00! My next Weather Xtreme video will be posted here Monday morning at 7:00… Brian Peters will have the video updates tomorrow and Sunday. Enjoy the weekend!