6:51AM December 29, 2020

SEVERE STORMS, HEAVY RAIN LIKELY THURSDAY; GORGEOUS TUESDAY… New Year’s Eve could feature heavy rain, flash flooding, and even a few tornadoes and areas of damaging winds as a strong storm system sets up to our west and pushes across our region. The main risk of severe storms will happen in the afternoon and evening hours of New Year’s Eve on Thursday. If you have outdoor plans for New Year’s festivities, please be aware that widespread heavy rain may be in progress for much of the evening. Fortunately, Thursday is an outlier in a slew of nice, sunny days ahead. Today and Wednesday will be nice and after clouds clear out Friday, the weekend looks fantastic as does early next week. Let’s look at all of your Tuesday forecast details.

SUNNY & MILD TODAY… Gorgeous weather is on tap for today with plenty of sunshine expected. High temperatures will be in the upper-60s by 2PM. Some spots may hit the 70 degree mark this afternoon. Just like yesterday, there may be a passing cloud or two, but vast majority of us will be completely sunny.

INCREASING CLOUDINESS ON WEDNESDAY… Our transition day of sorts will happen tomorrow (Wednesday) as cloud coverage begins to increase. High temperatures will surge into the low-70s, aka way too warm for a late December day. Very little to no rain is expected before sunset, but there could be a few showers developing in the evening hours on Wednesday after sunset.

SHOWERS LIKELY AT TIMES WEDNESDAY NIGHT… Overall coverage of showers will continue to grow on Wednesday night as a swift southerly breeze continues to usher in higher moisture amounts from the Gulf of Mexico. The area of low pressure and cold front setting up to our west will start its journey to the northeast, meaning our area will be involved in an increasingly unstable, warm, moist airmass as we go into Thursday. Overnight lows on Wednesday night into Thursday morning will be around 60 (also way too warm for a late December morning, compared to our climatological norms).

RAIN & STORMS LIKELY ON THURSDAY… Showers and thunderstorms will increase in coverage on Thursday in the late morning hours. Heavy rain will be possible throughout the afternoon and evening. There could be a few strong to severe discrete thunderstorms on Thursday afternoon and evening out ahead of an advancing line of thunderstorms. These discrete cells, if development happens, will have to be monitored carefully for potential tornadoes.

SEVERE WEATHER RISK THURSDAY AFTERNOON & EVENING… The main “storm mode” on Thursday looks to be a squall line of strong to severe storms with the potential for discrete storms out ahead of the main line. This is why the Storm Prediction Center continues to includes parts of south Alabama, northwest Florida, southern Mississippi, and eastern Louisiana in a severe weather risk zone. The main concerns will be damaging straight line winds, tornadoes, and flash flooding. Heavy rain could quickly become an issue if storms train over the same areas and cause flash flooding. Our last few weather systems have not really been prolific rain producers, but this system looks to produce quite a bit more rain. Most spots locally will pick up 1.5″ to 2.5″ of rain.

SEVERE WEATHER TIMING – THURSDAY… The 12 hour window for when thunderstorms seem most likely to happen will be from 2PM on Thursday to 2AM on Friday. Unfortunately, this timeframe *does* include when we will be ringing in the New Year 2021. There still could be some timing changes over the next 48 hours, but generally, we’re looking at Thursday afternoon and evening as to when rain and storms are most likely to happen across south Alabama and northwest Florida. I did not expect us to be bringing in the New Year potentially in live tornado warning coverage but that is a real possibility. We will be here every step of the way to bring you the latest, especially if we have warnings locally.

COASTAL FLOODING POSSIBLE THURSDAY NIGHT… The local National Weather Service is highlighting the potential for a strong onshore flow on Thursday evening that could lead to coastal flooding in low-lying areas, especially on/near Mobile Bay, but also including other bays and local shorelines.

CLEARING SKIES ON FRIDAY… After the passage of the cold front late Thursday or early Friday, we start the year 2021 with cooler temperatures and clearing skies on Friday morning. By the end of the day on Friday, there should be quite a few areas with full sunshine.

NICE, COOL WEEKEND AHEAD… The upcoming weekend looks quite nice! High temperatures will be in the upper-50s and near 60 with morning lows in the 30s on both Saturday morning and Sunday morning. Looking ahead to early next week, Monday will be sunny with highs in the 60s.

APP… If you haven’t already, be sure to download the free RedZone Weather app to keep up with all the latest information on the world of weather in south Alabama and northwest Florida. redzoneweather.com/app is the link for the free download. Once you have the app downloaded to your iOS or Android device, be sure to visit the Alerts tab (lower right corner) and tap the large, yellow Alert Settings button to customize the alerts you would like to receive straight from me.

See all the details in your Tuesday #rzw forecast video. Have a good day!

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