HEAVY RAIN TO THE SOUTH: Rain will spread over the southern third of Alabama this morning, and as much as 3 inches of rain will fall over that part of the state. Flash flood watches are in effect for coastal sections of Alabama and Northwest Florida. The best chances for rain will be along and south of US-84. Rain chances will taper the further north that you move, dropping from around 100% in the US-80 corridor to around 40% along and south of I-20. Rainfall amounts will taper as well, ranging from near an inch around Montgomery to a quarter inch in Clanton to around a tenth of an inch in Tuscaloosa, Birmingham and Anniston. Temperatures will follow the clouds and rain, with the warmest temperatures in the north, where lower 70s will be experienced. The I-20 corridor will see readings around 70F, but the further south you go, mid 60s will be more common.
FAST FORWARD TO SUMMERTIME: We will jump straight from spring to a sneak preview of summer by tomorrow. Highs will commonly be in the 80s Monday through Thursday across the area. Lows will gradually warm from the upper 50s Monday morning to the middle 60s by Thursday morning. Monday probably will be dry, but we will see a few afternoon thunderstorms on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. Chances will be a little enhanced on Tuesday, and then we will seal with a storm system by Thursday.
SEVERE WEATHER THURSDAY? After a surprisingly potent event this past week, also on Thursday, signs are that the upcoming system will not be as strong. Dewpoints will be lower, and correspondingly, so will the instabilities. Also, the system looks like it will be coming in mainly after midnight Thursday night and early Friday morning. But, shear profile will still be impressive and after all, it is April in Alabama, and that spells trouble. Tornadoes are not out of the question.
WEEKEND: Rain should end by lunch Friday and clearing skies should be the rule by sunset. It will turn sharply cooler behind the front, which is another concern for Thursday’s severe weather threat. Expect 60s Friday and Saturday, with 70s returning by Sunday. We could see a few showers by Sunday night as another upper level disturbance swings our way.
SEVERE WEATHER TALK: If you need a speaker for your church or civic group, I have a good presentation on severe weather preparedness taken from the January 2012 tornado outbreak. Just email me at billmurray at theweatherfactory.com.
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ON THIS DATE IN 1718: The bell ringer at the Cathedral of St. Pai de Leon in Brittany was killed when lightning struck the belfry. Bells were rung during storms to break up lightning, a practice that we know today in nonsense. Records indicate that as many as 103 bell ringers were killed in a 33 year period during the 18th century. Follow my weather history tweets on Twitter. I am @wxhistorian at Twitter.com.