STRONG TO SEVERE STORMS POSSIBLE TODAY… Scattered strong to severe thunderstorms will be possible on this Tuesday ahead of a cold front that will move through our area later this evening. Damaging wind gusts, an isolated tornado or two, large hail, and cloud-to-ground lightning will be the hazard concerns today. Much of our area remains involved in the Level 2 (out of 5) risk zone. The primary window for strong to severe storms to happen will be from 7AM to 4PM today with the core risk being from 10AM to 3PM. If you’re in an inland community, you are slightly more likely to have severe storms close by today compared to communities near the Alabama and northwest Florida beaches. Sunshine is set to return on Wednesday with much cooler temperatures expected. Highs on Wednesday will only top out in the low-70s. The cool down will be short-lived, however, as temperatures warm into the low-80s by Friday. Rain chances are set to rise again as we go into the weekend. Be sure to join me on Facebook Live and in the RedZone Weather app if we have tornado warning coverage. That is your summary, see all the details below.
POTENTIAL HAZARDS TODAY: DAMAGING WIND & ISOLATED TORNADOES… The primary concern on this Tuesday will be damaging “straight line winds” that happen in the stronger storms. We’ll be watching radar trends for any bowing segments that could produce severe winds (58+ mph) that could knock down trees and cause other damage. In addition, there also is some risk of a tornado or two in the stronger storms. If we have discrete, isolated supercell storms form, the tornado risk will end up being a bit higher. We’ll have a better idea of the specific storm modes over the next few hours. Large hail up to the size of golfballs will also be a concern. Due to the higher amounts of instability in the atmosphere compared to the active weather events we had earlier in the year, there will likely be more in the way of cloud-to-ground lightning with this event as well.
TIMING OF SEVERE WEATHER TODAY… 7AM to 4PM today is the window when severe storms will be most likely across south Alabama and northwest Florida. The core risk will be from 10AM to 3PM. Storms will move from west to east, but we note that there could be a few isolated stronger storms out ahead of the main batch of storms that will progressively move across our region. I’ll be giving “all clear” messages throughout the day in the RedZone Weather app as the threat ends from west to east.
LEVEL 2 (OUT OF 5) RISK INLAND… Our inland communities across southwest Alabama have a slightly increased severe weather risk compared to locales farther south near the beaches. Inland areas appear to be where the greater combination of “severe weather ingredients” will come together to support strong to severe storms. The following locations are involved in the Level 2 (out of 5) risk: Andalusia, Opp, Florala, Brewton, Atmore, Flomaton, Poarch, Huxford, Uriah, Frisco City, Excel, Monroeville, Beatrice, Peterman, Evergreen, Castleberry, Brooklyn, Repton, Greenville, Georgiana, McKenzie, Thomasville, Grove Hill, Jackson, Leroy, Chatom, and surrounding areas. This Level 2 risk also extends into central and southeast Alabama, including Geneva, Elba, Enterprise, Daleville, Dothan, Abbeville, Troy, Eufaula, Auburn, Montgomery, Hayneville, Camden, Selma, and Prattville.
LOWER-END, LEVEL 1 RISK NEAR COAST… Most locations in coastal counties are involved in the lower-end, Level 1 (out of 5) marginal risk zone where the atmosphere is not AS favorable for tornadoes or damaging winds. This zone includes Mobile, Prichard, Saraland, Dauphin Island, Wilmer, Pensacola, Fairhope, Daphne, Spanish Fort, Gulf Shores, Orange Beach, Pace, Milton, Molino, Jay, Navarre, Gulf Breeze, Destin, Crestview, Baker, and surrounding areas.
WIND ADVISORY TILL 7PM… Winds will be gusty at times today, especially across the southern half of our region. The National Weather Service has places all coastal counties and Escambia (AL) and Covington counties in a Wind Advisory due to the likelihood of 15-25 mph winds with gusts as high as 30-35 mph throughout the day.
TORNADO WARNING POLICY… Any time there is an active tornado warning in effect for southwest Alabama or northwest Florida, we provide uninterrupted, live video coverage on Facebook Live and in the RedZone Weather app. Our detailed coverage commitment is outlined at redzoneweather.com/coverage. We are proud to cover all parts of Escambia (AL), Covington, Monroe, Conecuh, Baldwin, Mobile, Clarke, Washington, Butler, Escambia (FL), Santa Rosa, and Okaloosa counties. If you live in any locale in those counties, be sure to tune into our coverage whenever there is an active tornado warning!
DOUBLE TROUBLE: COVID-19 & TORNADO WARNINGS… While we certainly all want to do our part to slow the spread of the coronavirus, if your location goes under a tornado warning, the tornado is the more IMMEDIATE threat of the two hazards. If you, your family, or your friends use a community underground storm shelter, please take the opportunity to read the recommended guidelines established by our local National Weather Service offices and the state health department. Basically, the tornado warning takes precedence over social distancing when/if necessary as the tornado is the more immediate threat. Here is the post outlining the details.
“WEATHER AWARENESS” ON LEVEL 2 RISK DAYS… We have observed an interesting phenomenon over the last year or so in that more people seem to pay attention and help get the word out during Level 3 and Level 4 severe weather risks. This makes sense, but it also is a bit concerning because we CAN have real problems on Level 2 risk days like what we’re looking at today. Obviously there is a bit more uncertainty involved on Level 2 risk days compared to the higher risk days, but there still is the potential for tornadoes and damaging winds involved. We greatly appreciate you helping us to inform folks who may not be as “weather aware” as you are! It takes a team to get the word out. Thanks for your help! I appreciate it. This is one of the many things we discuss with our friends and colleagues in the social science departments at colleges in Alabama, specifically the Center for Advanced Public Safety at UA in Tuscaloosa.
COLD FRONT MOVES THROUGH THIS EVENING… One of the reasons we have the potential for active weather today is because a cold front is approaching our area from the northwest. Right now, we’re out ahead of the front in the unstable warm sector. Once the cold front moves through your specific location, that is when the severe weather risk will come to an end for you. Temperatures will peak in the upper-70s and low-80s across the region today, but we will drop into the 60s this evening ahead of temperatures in the low-50s overnight.
COOL, MOSTLY SUNNY WEDNESDAY… High temperatures will struggle to reach 75° in most spots on Wednesday as a cooler, drier, much more stable air mass moves into our region. Any lingering clouds tomorrow morning will clear out to the east by midday.
WARMER ON THURSDAY & FRIDAY… The cool down that happens on Wednesday won’t last long as temperatures quickly reboud into the low-80s by Friday. Mostly sunny skies are likely on Thursday with just a few more clouds in the sky, comparatively, on Friday. There could be a few showers late Friday evening across our region, but I expect the daytime hours of Friday to be dry.
SHOWERS & STORMS POSSIBLE THIS WEEKEND… Don’t fret if you don’t get much rain today as we have more rain chances setting up for this weekend into early next week. Our weather pattern will probably be more active, with multiple areas of low pressure expected to move by, sparking the chance of showers and thunderstorms this weekend into early next week.
TURN ON APP ALERTS… Many updates will be posted throughout the day in the RedZone Weather app. redzoneweather.com/app is the link for the free download. Be sure to visit the Alerts tab (bottom right corner) and tap the large, yellow “Alert Settings” button to customize the alerts you’d like to receive from me. If you like a lot of info, be sure to toggle ON Low-Level Alerts.
CARDS FOR THE ELDERLY… Please don’t forget to take advantage of our new RedZone Weather Cards for the Elderly program. We want to be able to safely send as many encouraging cards as possible to our local senior adults in nursing homes. Be sure to visit the link below for all the information. This is an opportunity for students and adults across our region to write encouraging notes to elderly people currently under lockdown in local nursing homes due to the ongoing COVID-19 situation. Here is the link.
See all the graphics, details, and in-depth analysis in your Tuesday #rzw forecast video. Have a great day and please have a way to get urgent weather warnings!
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