6:52AM January 7, 2021

RAIN & STORMS THIS MORNING; COLD WEEKEND AHEAD; UPDATE ON SNOW CHANCES FOR MONDAY… Scattered showers will continue to move east across south Alabama and northwest Florida on this Thursday. There could be a few strong to marginally severe storms near the Alabama and northwest Florida beaches, but vast majority of us will just have rain at times today. The concern in any of the stronger storms will be gusty winds and perhaps a brief tornado. Keep in mind, vast majority of us will be just fine with no tornado issues today. After rain ends today, we’ve got a cold weekend on tap ahead of our next weather system that will move by late Sunday into Monday. There could be a brief changeover to snow flurries mixed in with the rain across the western part of our area on Monday, but confidence in that idea remains low. More forecast details are below.

FEW STRONG STORMS MAY HAPPEN NEAR BEACHES TODAY… The Storm Prediction Center has areas along and just south of the Alabama and northwest Florida beaches involved in their low-end, Level 1 (out of 5) marginal severe weather risk. We note Dauphin Island and Fort Morgan are the only two communities involved in this risk zone. That puts into perspective just how limited this threat zone is. The concern is that a few storms near the immediate beaches could briefly become supercell storms and produce a tornado or two. Gusty winds could also happen in the stronger storms. Let’s be clear that vast majority of us across south Alabama and northwest Florida will just have rain at times today, mainly this morning.

RAIN CLEARS OUT THIS EVENING… Showers and storms will clear out this afternoon into this evening. There could be some lingering showers around as late as 3PM or 4PM but I expect most of the organized rain to be cleared out to the east by then. Temperatures will fall into the 40s by 9PM this evening.

COLD, CLOUDY FRIDAY… Tomorrow will probably be one of those classic winter days where clouds hang tough behind the departing area of low pressure that moves near our region today. We have high temperatures forecast to hit 52 degrees tomorrow (Friday) afternoon but I would not be surprised if we have to adjust that number a bit lower due to low clouds keeping us even cooler than that throughout the day.

COLD WEEKEND AHEAD… Winter will be here in full force this weekend, in the temperature department at least. Highs will be in the 50s with morning lows in the 30s. I wouldn’t be shocked to see some locales across the interior of southwest Alabama briefly dip into the 20s on Saturday night into Sunday morning.

FEW SHOWERS POSSIBLE LATE SUNDAY INTO MONDAY… See more details in the following two paragraphs about the logic of this forecast below. Right now, we are calling exclusively for rain for much of our area late (after sunset) Sunday into Monday. There could be a brief changeover to flurries mixed in with rain as precipitation exits our area on Monday evening, although confidence in this idea remains low. Right now, no snow accumulation or significant impacts seem likely.

MOST LIKELY SCENARIO LOCALLY: JUST RAIN ON MONDAY… There continues to be considerable uncertainty regarding the exact track of the low pressure set to move through our region late Sunday into Monday. The exact track of the low pressure will have big implications on what kind of precipitation will happen for parts of the Deep South. Unfortunately for the snow fans, there continues to be good, consistent data that suggests this system will be a rainmaker for our area with very little chance of any appreciable snow accumulation. Right now, the most likely scenario points to rain for all of our area with perhaps a low (10-20%) chance of a brief changeover to flurries for up to a few minutes for parts of west Alabama.

WINTER WEATHER EVENTS ALWAYS A FORECAST CHALLENGE LOCALLY… Make no mistake that one of the most difficult things to forecast for (in our local area) are winter weather systems. The main reason for this simply is because snow and wintry precipitation does not happen very often where we live. The less historical data you have for a type of event, generally speaking, the harder it is to forecast said event. Our low latitude prevents snow from happening very much. Please keep this in mind as Monday approaches. Big forecast changes are possible in the days ahead.

COOL START TO NEXT WEEK… Sunshine will return Tuesday into Wednesday of the upcoming week with seasonal temperatures. Highs will be in the 50s with lows in the mid-30s.

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 Thursday #rzw forecast video. Have a great day!

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