Friday, April 12 Morning Forecast Discussion

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Happy Friday! A weak cold front will push across the area around sunrise this morning accompanied by light isolated showers. There is a gust front showing up on radar right ahead of the line and what this means is that winds could briefly gust between 25 and 30 mph right before the rain begins. These gusts fronts are not uncommon and you may especially notice them in the summertime when storms approach the area. Regardless, once the front passes it will lose its upper-level support and stall out around our area and so we look to keep with stray shower chances for the rest of the day.

The frontal boundary will lift up as a warm front late-Friday afternoon/early evening and a strong storm or two with small hail can’t entirely be ruled out, especially north of I-20 as the warm front lifts across our area. This frontal passage will lead to us being in the warm sector throughout our Saturday and thus isolated showers and perhaps a thunderstorm could fire up Saturday afternoon. Most of our Saturday will be dry. Widespread severe weather will be occurring well to the west of our area throughout the day on Saturday, but this activity will move towards our area Saturday evening into Sunday morning.

Impressive wind shear combined with ample instability will be able to keep the storms alive as they move through our area. They will be slightly weaker as they move through and there’s a good chance any discrete storms that approach our area will dissipate before they get here. This is something we’ll have to watch closely because if those discrete storms survive the overnight hours, strong tornadoes will be more likely. I’m leaning towards the solution that our severe weather Sunday morning will come from a squall line moving through. This means the primary threat will be damaging wind gusts up to 70 mph. Tornadoes may also spin-up along the squall line as well. Large hail is also a possibility, but it will be a lesser threat. The squall line and thus our severe weather threat should end by 9 a.m. over west Alabama, which will be the last area to get in on the storms. (The squall line will move from west to east).

We’ll dry out for Monday and Tuesday, with noticeably cooler temperatures, especially during both those mornings as temperatures are expected to drop into the 40s. Widespread 80s for highs will return by Wednesday along with isolated shower and storm chances. A cold front is expected to push through by Thursday, and this could also bring another round of strong to severe storms across our area. We’ll have to get through Sunday morning’s severe weather event before more details become clear with this frontal passage late next week.