Staying Hot and Muggy…Changes on the Way – Saturday Evening Forecast Update 8:20 PM

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Temperatures this afternoon soared into the mid 90s for most locations across west Alabama and when the humidity is factored in, the heat index rose to between 100 and 105 – sweltering! Not much relief this afternoon either as the showers and storms remain generally confined to our south and east today. That’s thanks to the ridge of high pressure that was entrenched over our area earlier in the week finally beginning to retrograde to the west.

I think we’ll have one more day of rather hot and humid conditions tomorrow as that high is holding its own. Still, scattered showers and storms are expected to develop during the peak heating hours, but a lot of places will remain dry and hot. By Monday, however, some changes in the upper-levels of the atmosphere will start to happen. The aforementioned high will finally break down enough and shift far enough to the west to allow for a trough to develop southward across the eastern third of the country.

As we evolve into a northwesterly flow aloft by Monday, I think our overall rain chances will increase. There are a few signals in the model guidance that suggest a few decaying storms may try to work into our area at various times, so it could be hard to pinpoint exact rain chances for Monday and Tuesday. Still, afternoon showers and storms are an increasing possibility Monday afternoon and evening as a frontal boundary approaches from the north.

Some uncertainty comes into the forecast with respect to how this frontal boundary works through the area. The GFS wants to keep the front around in central Alabama through Tuesday, while the NAM and Euro want to shift it to our south, effectively ending our rain chances. I will elect to keep the rain chances in the forecast for Tuesday, but the better coverage should be along and south of I-20. All models agree though that the mid and late week will remain rain-free and slightly cooler than what we are experiencing now thanks to some drier air working in from the north.

Isaac Williams
WVUA-TV Weather
Twitter: @WVUA_Isaac

Hot Weekend Ahead… Few Storms… Friday Forecast Update – 5:20pm

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Good Friday afternoon! It has been a hot day, with most of Alabama reaching the lower to middle 90s. The high pressure that has kept much of Alabama hot and dry is pushing out of our area. In response to that, a few scattered storms have developed across central and east Alabama. As for the local High School football games, expect a small risk of a passing shower or storm. The best chance of rain will occur in east Alabama, but I really think most stadiums will be dry. Temperatures will start off in the upper 80s at 7pm, then fall into the upper 70s by 10pm. Lows tonight will reach the lower 70s. Conditions will remain very muggy during the overnight hours.

The holiday weekend forecast will include hot and hazy conditions. A stray shower or storm is possible on Saturday and Sunday, but it looks like most of Alabama will stay dry. The risk of rain for one spot is only at 20% on Saturday and 30% on Sunday. Expect highs in the lower 90s. A cold front will slide into Alabama on Monday and Tuesday. This will bring a better chance of scattered storms on Labor day and on Tuesday. Drier air takes over on Wednesday and Thursday, with a high in the upper 80s. Lows will fall into the upper 60s at night.

If you’re going to the beach for the holiday weekend, look for mostly dry and hot weather. Temperatures will reach the upper 80s on Saturday and Sunday, with lows in the middle 70s. The risk of rain along the Alabama Gulf Coast is low, but a passing shower or storm is possible. Water temperatures are in the upper 80s.

Alabama takes on Virginia Tech Saturday at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta. While the game will be indoors, the weather outside the dome will feature temperatures in the upper 80s. There is a chance of a few scattered showers or storms Saturday afternoon in Atlanta. Keep that in mind if you will be traveling to Atlanta for the game…

Auburn takes on Washington State in Auburn. Expect temperatures in the upper 80s at the 6pm kickoff, with upper 70s to end the game. A passing shower is possible, but the risk of rain is low.

Send us your weather pictures! Send them to weather@wvuatv.com. Also, look us up on facebook and twitter. Like us on facebook by searching facebook.com/wvuaweather or WVUA-TV Weather. You can find us on twitter by searching weather@wvuatv.comor WVUA-TV Weather. Great way to get weather updates! Plus, facebook is a great way to send us weather pictures. Simply tag us!

Join us live on WVUA-TV weekdays at 4, 5, 6 and 10 pm and weekends at 10pm for the very latest on your news, weather and sports.

Richard Scott
WVUA Chief Meteorologist
rscott@wvuatv.com
Twitter: Richard_wvua

Humidity Returns… Thursday Afternoon Forecast Update – 4:40pm

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Good Thursday afternoon! Temperatures have turned out hot this afternoon, with most areas reporting temperatures between 90 and 93 degrees. Dewpoints are gradually coming up this afternoon, so humidity is fairly noticeable. As humidity continues to increase, conditions will feel very muggy just in time for our holiday weekend plans. A surface high and upper air ridge west of Alabama is moving away. As this trend continues, we will start to introduce rain chances back into the forecast over the next several days.

If you have plans outdoors tonight, expect temperatures to fall into the upper 80s by 7pm and upper 70s by 10pm. Skies will remain clear tonight and there is no risk of rain. Overnight lows will fall into the lower 70s, which is much warmer than recent nights. Higher dewpoints are keeping lows warmer tonight, since the air temperature can’t drop below the dewpoint. Friday will feature a typical summer-like day, as temperatures warm into the lower 90s. A few heat activated showers or storms will develop on Friday, but most areas will remain rain free.

The holday weekend will feature a partly cloudy sky and mild temperatures. Highs will warm into the lower 90s, with lows in the lower 70s. Heat index values will approach 100 at times this weekned, so take it easy if you’re working outdoors. There is a fair chance of scattered weekend storms, but the best chance will occur east of I-65. West Alabama will deal with a few scattered weekend storms, but I expect most areas to remain dry.

A weak cold front will push into north Alabama on Labor Day. We can expect a good chance of scattered showers and storms ahead of the front, but it will not rain all day. Look for a mixture of clouds and sun on Monday, with a 40% risk of rain and storms. The front will push through Alabama during the day on Tuesday, so rain chances will end from north to south. Areas north of I-20 will be dry on Tuesday. All of Alabama will be rain free on Wednesday and Thursday as some dry and cooler air moves into Alabama. Highs will top out in the upper 80s on Wednesday and Thursday, with lows in the 60s Wednesday night.

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As for tropics… It has been a really quiet year so far, but things are starting to heat up a bit. We’re watching 2 areas in the central and eastern Atlantic. Both areas have a chance of becoming a tropical storm over the next few days, but we’ve got lots of time to watch these systems.

Today is the 8 year anniversary of Hurricane Katrina. We can be thankful there isn’t anything like that out there this season, but we’ll keep a close eye on the tropics. We still have lots of warm water in the tropics…

Alabama takes on Virginia Tech Saturday at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta. While the game will be indoors, the weather outside the dome will feature temperatures in the upper 80s. There is a chance of a few scattered showers or storms Saturday afternoon in Atlanta. Keep that in mind if you will be traveling to Atlanta for the game…

Send us your weather pictures! Send them to weather@wvuatv.com. Also, look us up on facebook and twitter. Like us on facebook by searching facebook.com/wvuaweather or WVUA-TV Weather. You can find us on twitter by searching weather@wvuatv.comor WVUA-TV Weather. Great way to get weather updates! Plus, facebook is a great way to send us weather pictures. Simply tag us!

Join us live on WVUA-TV weekdays at 4, 5, 6 and 10 pm and weekends at 10pm for the very latest on your news, weather and sports.

Richard Scott
WVUA Chief Meteorologist
rscott@wvuatv.com
Twitter: Richard_wvua

 

The Monster Named Katrina Made Landfall 8 Years Ago Today… Thursday Update – 9:30am

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Good Thursday morning! It was this day 8 years ago, when one of the worst US Natural Disasters would occur. At 6:10am, the eye of hurricane Katrina had made it’s first northern Gulf Coast landfall along the southeastern tip of Louisiana. It would then make a second landfall along the Mississippi Gulf Coast a few hours later, as it tracked north. There were actually 3 landfalls in the US with Katrina, with the first happening in southeast Florida, as the storm was just starting to get organized. Hurricane Katrina was a monster as it tracked across the gulf. The setup was perfect for this wild storm, due to extremely warm gulf water temperatures, no wind shear, no nearby dry air and general rising motion in the tropics.

The storm tracked around a ridge of high pressure, located from Bermuda to Georgia. There was a weakness in the ridge over the northern Gulf Coast, which caused the storm to turn north and impact our area, as well as the surrounding states.

What made Katrina such a mess for so many was her size. Katrina was an enormous storm… Small hurricanes typically die out quickly at landfall and the core of the strong winds and surge only affect a small area. With Katrina’s enormous size, the storm took a long time to weaken over land and the damaging winds and surge extended well out from the center. There was a storm surge in Gulf Shores similar to the one with Hurricane Ivan. Katrina made landfall over 100 miles away from Gulf Shores! The damaging winds extended hundreds of miles inland, which caused major issues, even across Alabama.

Below is a great article from the National Weather Service in Birmingham, which includes the local impacts from Katrina in west and central Alabama. Check it out!

Hurricane Katrina formed near Long Island in the Bahamas on the afternoon of August 23rd, 2005. Katrina reached hurricane strength just before making landfall north of Miami, Florida on the evening on August 25th, 2005. Katrina produced 10 to 20 inches of rain, flooding, tornadoes, and injuries across far southern Florida.

Katrina moved southwestward across the extreme southern tip of Florida and into the southeastern Gulf of Mexico. Katrina reached category five in the central Gulf of Mexico with sustained winds around 175 mph. This occurred on Sunday August 28th, 2005. Katrina then turned on a northward path.

Hurricane Katrina made landfall along the Gulf Coast early Monday morning August 29th, 2005 as a large category four hurricane. Sustained winds were around 145 mph in Southeast Louisiana. Katrina continued northward, affecting areas from near New Orleans, Louisiana to near Mobile, Alabama. Devastating damage occurred along the Gulf Coast. Katrina will most likely go down as one of the worst natural disasters in United States history.

Katrina weakened to a tropical storm Monday evening August 29th, 2005 northwest of Meridian, Mississippi. Katrina continued to move northward across far eastern Mississippi overnight, then into Tennessee Tuesday morning. Katrina finally lost its tropical characteristics as it merged with a cold front over northern Pennsylvania on August 31st, 2005.

Katrina produced local effects that were widespread across Central Alabama. Numerous trees and power lines were downed, minor to major structural damage occurred, and power outages were widespread. Many locations remained without power for a week or more. Storm damage effects across parts of West Central Alabama were worse than what was sustained during Hurricane Ivan in 2004.

Four tornadoes occurred across Central Alabama, two F0s and two F1s.  Here is the information on those tornadoes.

Storm total rain amounts of 1 inch or less were measured in the northeast and east central portions of Central Alabama. This was due to dry air wrapping into the circulation Katrina and diminishing the rain area. Rain totals of 1 to 2 inches were common over the southeast sections. Rainfall amounts of 2 to 4 inches occurred over much of West Alabama, west of interstate 65. Some locations received 5 to 6 inch amounts in the northwest sections, specifically in Lamar and Marion Counties.

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 The highest sustained winds from Katrina ranged from 25 mph along the Georgia state line to around 65 mph along the Mississippi state line. Peak wind gusts generally ranged from around 35 mph to near 80 mph, with the highest gusts occurring across West Central Alabama and in the highest elevations.

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Here are some peak wind gusts and storm total rainfall amounts associated with Hurricane Katrina.

WVUA Chief Meteorologist Richard Scott

rscott@wvuatv.com

 

Hot Days… Few Weekend Storms… Wednesday Forecast Update – 4:15pm

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Good Wednesday afternoon! Our weather is getting a little hotter this afternoon, with most areas topping out near 90 degrees. Humidity remains fairly low today, but that is starting to change. The humidity can’t remain low very long in late August. Humidity will increase some on Thursday and a lot on Friday. Dewpoints will surge into the lower 70s on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. As moisture levels increase over the weekend, a few scattered storms will become possible.

If you’re going to be outdoors tonight, expect temperatures to fall into the lower 80s at 7pm and lower 70s at 10pm. Skies will remain clear through the overnight hours. We’ll notice plenty of sunshine on Thursday, with a high near 93. As the upper air ridge moves west of Alabama, an upper air trough will nudge in from the northeast. The trough and tropical moisture will help to kick off scattered storms around here on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. The higher rain chance will occur on Saturday, Sunday and Monday. As a cold front moves into Alabama Monday night, we’ll continue to see some storms in the area. It will not rain all day or night, but some scattered storms are possible.

Drier air is set to move in on Monday and Tuesday, with highs in the upper 80s and lows in the upper 60s. Skies will become mostly sunny on Tuesday and Wednesday.

The tropics are quiet at this hour, which is very rare for the peak of the Hurricane Season. We’ll keep a close eye on future development….

Alabama takes on Virginia Tech Saturday at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta. While the game will be indoors, the weather outside the dome will feature temperatures in the upper 80s. There is a chance of a few scattered showers or storms Saturday afternoon in Atlanta. Keep that in mind if you will be traveling to Atlanta for the game…

Send us your weather pictures! Send them to weather@wvuatv.com. Also, look us up on facebook and twitter. Like us on facebook by searching facebook.com/wvuaweather or WVUA-TV Weather. You can find us on twitter by searching weather@wvuatv.comor WVUA-TV Weather. Great way to get weather updates! Plus, facebook is a great way to send us weather pictures. Simply tag us!

Join us live on WVUA-TV weekdays at 4, 5, 6 and 10 pm and weekends at 10pm for the very latest on your news, weather and sports.

Richard Scott
WVUA Chief Meteorologist
rscott@wvuatv.com
Twitter: Richard_wvua

 

8 Years Ago… Looking Back at Hurricane Katrina… Wednesday Update – 11:30am

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This time, 8 years ago, we were all watching with disbelief has one of the most destructive hurricanes of our time was bearing down on the Gulf Coast. Hurricane Katrina was making a turn to the north and had it’s sight set on Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama, where horrible damage was about to occur. The official landfall would occur on the next morning, along the southeastern tip of Louisiana and then another landfall point along the Mississippi coast a few hours later. Nearly 2,000 people died as a result of the powerful hurricane and floods involved.

The day before the storm hit, the National Weather Service in New Orleans issued a statement that ran chills down my back. I have never seen a statement like this until Hurricane Katrina, and I hope I never see another statement like the one below… Again, this was issued on Sunday, August 28, 2005…

URGENT – WEATHER MESSAGE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE NEW ORLEANS LA 1011 AM CDT SUN AUG 28 2005

…DEVASTATING DAMAGE EXPECTED…

.HURRICANE KATRINA…A MOST POWERFUL HURRICANE WITH UNPRECEDENTED STRENGTH…RIVALING THE INTENSITY OF HURRICANE CAMILLE OF 1969.

MOST OF THE AREA WILL BE UNINHABITABLE FOR WEEKS…PERHAPS LONGER. AT LEAST ONE HALF OF WELL CONSTRUCTED HOMES WILL HAVE ROOF AND WALL FAILURE. ALL GABLED ROOFS WILL FAIL…LEAVING THOSE HOMES SEVERELY DAMAGED OR DESTROYED.

THE MAJORITY OF INDUSTRIAL BUILDINGS WILL BECOME NON FUNCTIONAL. PARTIAL TO COMPLETE WALL AND ROOF FAILURE IS EXPECTED. ALL WOOD FRAMED LOW RISING APARTMENT BUILDINGS WILL BE DESTROYED. CONCRETE BLOCK LOW RISE APARTMENTS WILL SUSTAIN MAJOR DAMAGE…INCLUDING SOME WALL AND ROOF FAILURE.

HIGH RISE OFFICE AND APARTMENT BUILDINGS WILL SWAY DANGEROUSLY…A FEW TO THE POINT OF TOTAL COLLAPSE. ALL WINDOWS WILL BLOW OUT.

AIRBORNE DEBRIS WILL BE WIDESPREAD…AND MAY INCLUDE HEAVY ITEMS SUCH AS HOUSEHOLD APPLIANCES AND EVEN LIGHT VEHICLES. SPORT UTILITY VEHICLES AND LIGHT TRUCKS WILL BE MOVED. THE BLOWN DEBRIS WILL CREATE ADDITIONAL DESTRUCTION. PERSONS…PETS…AND LIVESTOCK EXPOSED TO THE WINDS WILL FACE CERTAIN DEATH IF STRUCK.

POWER OUTAGES WILL LAST FOR WEEKS…AS MOST POWER POLES WILL BE DOWN AND TRANSFORMERS DESTROYED. WATER SHORTAGES WILL MAKE HUMAN SUFFERING INCREDIBLE BY MODERN STANDARDS.

THE VAST MAJORITY OF NATIVE TREES WILL BE SNAPPED OR UPROOTED. ONLY THE HEARTIEST WILL REMAIN STANDING…BUT BE TOTALLY DEFOLIATED. FEW CROPS WILL REMAIN. LIVESTOCK LEFT EXPOSED TO THE WINDS WILL BE KILLED.

AN INLAND HURRICANE WIND WARNING IS ISSUED WHEN SUSTAINED WINDS NEAR HURRICANE FORCE…OR FREQUENT GUSTS AT OR ABOVE HURRICANE FORCE…ARE CERTAIN WITHIN THE NEXT 12 TO 24 HOURS.

ONCE TROPICAL STORM AND HURRICANE FORCE WINDS ONSET…DO NOT VENTURE OUTSIDE!

The statement above was from the National Weather Service office out of New Orleans. This was issued the day before Hurricane Katrina Made Landfall.

Richard Scott

WVUA Chief Meteorologist

rscott@wvuatv.com

 

Hot Days Ahead… Scattered Weekend Storms… Tuesday Forecast Update – 4pm

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Good Tuesday afternoon! After a nice and refreshing start to the day, temperatures made a fast recovery back into the middle to upper 80s this afternoon. Most areas this morning started off in the lower 60s; in-fact, Tuscaloosa reported a low of 64 degrees. The atmosphere over Alabama is really dry, so temperatures can heat and cool quickly between day and night. Expect another fast drop in temperatures after sunset. If you are going to be outdoors this evening, expect temperatures to fall into the lower 80s by 7pm and lower 70s at 10pm. After 10pm, temperatures will drop into the 60s, under a clear sky.

A ridge of high pressure northwest of Alabama is baking the central and northern US in very hot weather. Fortunately, the core of the upper air ridge will stay to our west. This means, temperatures in our area won’t reach the extreme levels. Since we have a north flow today and will continue a light north wind tomorrow, humidit will remain low. Air temperatures will reach the lower 90s for the rest of the week and over the weekend.

Changes are likely on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, as low level moisture moves back into the area. Expect the chance of a few scattered storms, especially on Saturday and Sunday. It will not be a total weekend washout, but a few scattered storms are possible. Rain chances stand at 30% to 40% this weekend and will continue through early next week. This should be the typical scattered summer storms, where some areas stay dry and some areas get a downpour.

The tropics remain really quiet, which is very unusual for the end of August. We’re getting close to the peak of the Atlantic Hurricane Season. This time in years past, we have had 2 to 4 named storms at the same time. We’ll keep an eye on the latest trends as the hurricane season continues…

Alabama takes on Virginia Tech Saturday at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta. While the game will be indoors, the weather outside the dome will feature temperatures in the upper 80s. There is a chance of a few scattered showers or storms Saturday afternoon in Atlanta. Keep that in mind if you will be traveling to Atlanta for the game…

Send us your weather pictures! Send them to weather@wvuatv.com. Also, look us up on facebook and twitter. Like us on facebook by searching facebook.com/wvuaweather or WVUA-TV Weather. You can find us on twitter by searching weather@wvuatv.comor WVUA-TV Weather. Great way to get weather updates! Plus, facebook is a great way to send us weather pictures. Simply tag us!

Join us live on WVUA-TV weekdays at 4, 5, 6 and 10 pm and weekends at 10pm for the very latest on your news, weather and sports.

Richard Scott
WVUA Chief Meteorologist
rscott@wvuatv.com
Twitter: Richard_wvua