6:52AM August 31, 2018

TROPICS HEATING UP QUICKLY… There remains a 10-20% chance that a tropical storm may form in the Gulf of Mexico in the middle part of next week. We’re also now keeping tabs on what will be Tropical Storm Florence later today or tonight in the far eastern part of the Atlantic Ocean, near the Cabo Verde Islands. Scattered showers and thunderstorms are expected across south Alabama and northwest Florida on this Friday and over the next few days. Let’s talk details, first about today and tonight locally then shifting to the tropics…

STORMS AROUND TODAY… Scattered to numerous showers and thunderstorms will pop up today across the region very similar to previous days. These storms are not associated with a tropical system, but are instead rooted in the seabreeze and ample heat content in the atmopshere. Some of these summer pop up storms can absolutely put weak tropical systems to shame! Keep tabs on the radar throughout the day into the evening. Severe weather is not expected, but these storms can and will “pack a punch” in some cases with gusty winds, heavy rain and cloud-to-ground lightning. Storms will progressively fade after sunset.

FRIDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL… High school football either begins or continues in Week 2 for many schools across our region this evening. Rain chances are a bit higher tonight compared to last Friday night. MOST of us across the region should be dry, but there will be some games that have rain/storms around. Take the umbrellas tonight, just in case you’re under a shower. Game time temps at 7PM will be around 81 degrees in most spots, falling to around 75 by the 4th quarter.

TROPICAL WAVE TO MOVE INTO GULF… No real changes to pass along since last night’s update (read the detailed post here). The National Hurricane Center continues to call for a 10-20%, low-end chance that a tropical storm may form in the Gulf of Mexico next week, likely in the Tuesday to Thursday timeframe. It’s still too early to say whether impacts will be an issue around our local area. We’ll monitor this system carefully and bring you an update first thing on Saturday morning. Again, no need to stress or worry about this system as of now. It’s at least 5 days out with plenty of uncertainty in the low confidence forecast. More data will help firm up the forecast this weekend into early next week.

IMPACTS NOTE… **IF** (and that’s a big IF, at this point) impacts happen because of the tropical wave that may become a tropical storm in the Gulf, we’re looking at the Tuesday to Friday timeframe for our local area. Again, odds are such that no major local impacts are expected as of now. I’ll keep you posted here on Facebook and in the RedZone Weather app.

FLORENCE TO BECOME A HURRICANE… The National Hurricane Center has the system branded as “Potential Tropical Cyclone #6” as of now, but this system will be (if it is not already by the time you see this post!) Tropical Storm Florence likely before the end of the day. Florence-to-be is expected to become a hurricane over the next few days as it moves northwest over the open waters of the Atlantic Ocean. The official forecast (and all major weather models) show Florence recurving north and ultimately northeast over the Atlantic and staying well away from any landmass. We’ll watch it, but the preliminary forecasts show good news!

STORMS THIS WEEKEND… Scattered showers and thunderstorms will happen again across the Deep South on Saturday and on Sunday. Rain chances will go down slightly as an upper ridge builds in from the north. If you’re headed to a local beach, there will be some sunshine in the mix. High temperatures will be around 90 consistently over the next few days.

APP ALERTS… Be sure to visit the Alerts tab (bottom right) here in the RZWeather app to customize the alerts you’d like to receive straight from me. (big, yellow “Alert Settings” button!)

Let me know if you have any weather-related questions or concerns. My next forecast post on Facebook will be up by 7:15AM on Saturday. You’re not guaranteed to see my posts on Facebook, but you ARE guaranteed to see the latest from me if you download the RedZone Weather app and tap the “Latest” button. Plenty of updates in the app all day long into this evening. Have a wonderful weekend!

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