Wednesday Forecast Update… 4:30PM #alwx @wvua23

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Good Wednesday afternoon! As the upper air ridge builds over Alabama, the summer feel has returned! As of 4pm, temperatures have warmed into the lower to middle 90s, with a heat index over 100. With a ridge dominant in the forecast through the weekend, I don’t expect any real changes to the forecast.

Expect temperatures to drop into the lower to middle 70s overnight, with rain-free conditions. A high dewpoint will add a muggy feel to the air overnight. Thursday through Sunday will feature hot days and mild nights. Expect highs to reach the middle 90s Thursday through Sunday. There is a small chance of a passing afternoon storm each day, but the risk of rain is less than 20%. Heat index will approach 100 to 103 each afternoon.

Now… On to the tropics… Tropical Storm Gaston in the east Atlantic is moving northwest, with winds at 70mph. Gaston should become a hurricane soon, but wind shear is preventing rapid development at this time.

Below is a satellite image, with computer model tracks from a tropical wave near the northern Lesser Antilles. With dry air and wind shear over the tropical wave now, it has really become ragged this afternoon. Thunderstorms are not concentrated near the center, rather they are in clusters removed from the center. Models suggest the best chance of organization will occur on Friday through Sunday, as the environment around the tropical wave becomes favorable for development. There is a chance this system will never become well organized and only become a rain-maker for Florida this weekend into early next week.

Most models suggest the system will move into south Florida late this weekend, then turn north across the state. Given the blocking ridge forecasted to be north of the storm, there is still a chance it gets into the Gulf of Mexico. The bottom line… until a fixed center can develop within the tropical wave, computer model data will be nearly worthless. I expect the projected path and intensity to become much more clear over the next day or two, so keep checking back with us for updates. At this time, I don’t know if this will even become a tropical storm or hurricane. There are just too many questions to be answered first. There is no need to panic if you live near the gulf coast or southeast Atlantic coast. Lets just sit back and wait on model data to clear up a bit over the next few days.

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Join us live on WVUA23 weekdays at 5, 6 and 10:00 P.M. and weekends at 10PM for the very latest on your news, weather and sports.

Richard Scott
WVUA Chief Meteorologist
rscott@wvua23.com
Twitter: RichardWVUA23
Facebook: WVUA23RichardScott

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