RZW EXEC: STRONG TO SEVERE STORMS POSSIBLE TUESDAY… RZW Exec partners, good Monday evening! We continue to look at the severe weather risk setting up for Tuesday (tomorrow) across south Alabama and northwest Florida. It appears the greatest risk will happen across INLAND counties, with a lower risk closer to the immediate coast. The main concern on Tuesday will be damaging wind gusts in the stronger storms that will be capable of knocking down trees. Isolated tornadoes and large hail will also be possible in the stronger storms.
Overview: Scattered severe thunderstorms will be possible on Tuesday, most likely in the daytime hours, across south Alabama and northwest Florida. Tornadoes will be possible.
Threat Level: Level 2 (out of 5) risk, meaning scattered instances of severe storms will be possible.
Where: Inland areas of south Alabama are involved in the Level 2 (out of 5) risk zone, including all parts of Covington, Escambia (AL), Butler, Crenshaw, Conecuh, Monroe, Clarke, and Washington counties. Our coastal counties are involved in the lower-end Level 1 (out of 5) marginal severe weather risk. This includes Escambia (FL), Santa Rosa, Okaloosa, Walton, Mobile, and Baldwin counties.
When: 6AM to 4PM Tuesday, March 31. The core risk will be from 9AM to 3PM.
Risks: A few tornadoes. Damaging wind gusts up to 70 mph in the stronger storms. Large hail will also be possible in the stronger storms.
I will begin publishing this information publicly in the next few hours. As always, please let me know if you have any questions or have specific decision support needs. Thank you!
Below is the public, long form post that will debut this evening.
DAMAGING WIND GUSTS & TORNADOES POSSIBLE ON TUESDAY… Severe storms will have the potential to produce damaging winds and potentially a few tornadoes on Tuesday as a potent storm system moves through from west to east across our local area. The Storm Prediction Center continues to outlook much of our area in their Level 2 (out of 5) severe weather risk valid on Tuesday, meaning scattered instances of severe weather will be possible. Let’s be clear: Not everyone will have weather issues on Tuesday, but there could be multiple locales that experience trees down and perhaps more damage IF tornadoes happen. Unfortunately, this system likely will not be a significant rain event for our region. Most spots can expect upwards of one half inch to one inch of rainfall in total. Let’s look at the information you need to know tonight…
HAVE A WAY TO GET URGENT WEATHER WARNINGS TONIGHT… Before you go to sleep, I would encourage you to have at least one (if not multiple) ways to receive urgent weather warnings. You need something like a NOAA Weather Radio that will wake you up if your area goes under a tornado warning or a severe thunderstorm warning. Cell phone apps, including our free RedZone Weather app, are a great choice for alerting options too. Let’s be clear in stating that the core risk will be in the daytime hours of Tuesday (more info on specific timing below), but I can’t completely rule out a few stronger storms over west Alabama as early as 4AM or 5AM. Thus, we want everyone to have a way to get warnings before you go to sleep this evening as a course of least regret.
MAIN CONCERNS TUESDAY – DAMAGING WINDS & TORNADOES… Based on the latest model guidance, it has become increasingly apparent that damaging straight line winds will likely be our greatest risk on Tuesday in the stronger storms. There could be a few tornadoes involved as well, but this may not matter if we have a widespread damaging wind event as straight line winds can sometimes be as bad or worse than tornadoes. Large hail, up to the size of golfballs, will be possible in the strongest of the storms. The overall risk for flash flooding remains very low as overall rain amounts will probably less than one inch in total across the region. Cloud-to-ground lightning will also be a concern.
TIMING – SEVERE WEATHER RISK TUESDAY… 6AM to 4PM on Tuesday remains the ten hour window when strong to severe storms will be most likely to happen across south Alabama and northwest Florida. The core risk will be from 9AM 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.
The following information has not changed since our previous detailed update this morning.
COVID-19 AND TORNADO WARNING GUIDELINES… We’re in a strange time when the guidelines on what to do during a tornado warning versus what to do regarding social distancing because of COVID-19 may seem to conflict. 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 those details.
COOLER, DRIER AIR ARRIVES TUESDAY NIGHT… The reason we have a chance of severe storms on Tuesday is partly because of the forcing caused by the advancing cold front that will be moving into our area on Tuesday evening. This front will bring cooler, drier air into our region by Tuesday night.
BETTER WEATHER ON WEDNESDAY & THURSDAY… Nicer, slightly cooler, and drier conditions will be in place for Wednesday and Thursday. High temperatures will drop into the mid-70s by Wednesday with overnight lows falling into the mid- to upper-50s. Mostly sunny skies are likely Wednesday with partly cloudy skies on Thursday.
MORE RAIN & STORMS POSSIBLE THIS WEEKEND… There could be a few showers ahead of an area of low pressure inching closer to our area on Friday. Rain chances will rise as we go into next weekend with a chance of showers and thunderstorms on Saturday. It is too early to talk specifics on that system, but it is late March and early April (heart of severe weather season!), meaning we need to watch this system closely. I’ll have more details about this once we get through the active weather on Tuesday.
APP ALERTS… redzoneweather.com/app is the link where you can download the free RedZone Weather app. We post brief updates throughout each day in the app, keeping you up-to-date about the latest happenings in weather across south Alabama and northwest Florida. Once you have the free app downloaded to your iOS or Android device, be sure to visit the Alerts tab (lower right corner) then tap the large, yellow Alert Settings button to customize the alerts you would like to receive straight from me.
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.
I’ll have more updates overnight and on Tuesday morning in the RedZone Weather app before the next detailed video and text discussion. The video will be posted by 7:15AM tomorrow morning. Have a great evening!