James Spann: Wind, rain, gales for Alabama tonight

Severe weather possible in southwest Alabama tonight from the Alabama News Center on Vimeo.

STRONG WEATHER TONIGHT: The weather in Alabama remains dry today with partly sunny skies. Expect highs in the 50’s over northern counties this afternoon, with 60’s in the south. During the day the clouds increase.

A dynamic weather system will bring wind, rain and thunderstorms to the state tonight. The Storm Prediction Center maintains an increased risk (Level 3 of 5) for severe storms tonight for areas south of a line from Millry via Evergreen to Brewton. A low risk (Level 2) extends to Sweetwater, Greenville and Geneva to the north and east. Marginal risk is defined as far north as Tuscaloosa, but severe thunderstorms are not expected over north and central Alabama due to the absence of surface-based instabilities.

GRADIENT WIND: It’s important to note that while the core hazard from severe thunderstorms is limited to the southwest corner of Alabama, the entire state will be exposed to strong gradient winds (which are not thunderstorm-related). A wind warning is in effect statewide and a high wind warning has been issued for Mobile, Baldwin and Washington counties. Expect intermittent wind gusts of up to 40mph tonight which could knock down some trees due to wet ground conditions. Those along the ridges could see a gust of up to 80 km/h in places. Tonight it will be very windy and noisy.

HEAVY THUNDERSTORM: Southwest Alabama thunderstorms in the increased risk area could produce hail, damaging winds and some tornadoes. A strong tornado (EF-2 or higher) cannot be ruled out. The air over the northern half of the state will be cool and stable, and very little thunder is expected there (upgrade winds are the problem).

TIMED COORDINATION: High gradient winds are likely over the state from about 8 tonight through Wednesday morning. Gusts are still possible up to 25-30mph on Wednesday afternoon before tapering off on Wednesday evening. Regarding severe thunderstorms in southwest Alabama, the 11 a.m. to 4 a.m. window tonight is coming

For those of you in Southwest Alabama, be safe and have a reliable way to hear alerts tonight and before dawn on Wednesday. Never rely on a siren. A NOAA weather radio is the baseline, and make sure you have wireless emergency alerts enabled on your phone. If you live in an RV, know the location of the nearest emergency shelter or 24-hour convenience store that can serve as a safe haven. have transportation available.

Due to strong wind gusts expected tonight, all states should secure loose items on your property.

The rain stops on Wednesday morning; Clouds will linger through the afternoon with temperatures in the 50s.

THURSDAY FRIDAY: Thursday will be colder with a mix of sun and clouds; Highs will be in the 40’s over northern Alabama with 50’s for southern counties. A few light snow flurries cannot be ruled out over the Tennessee Valley Thursday morning, but no clustering or impact is expected. Friday offers a good supply of sunshine with highs in the 50’s and 60’s.

THE ALABAMA WEEKEND: Saturday will be dry with partly to mostly sunny skies; Highs will remain in the 50’s and 60’s. Clouds will return on Saturday evening and occasional rain is likely on Sunday with highs in the 50s. The air will be stable on Sunday, so no severe storms are expected.

NEXT WEEK: A decent part of the day on Monday will be dry but expect rainy spells Tuesday through Thursday. Much colder air arrives at the end of the week; it’s too early to know how cold it is and if there will be a chance of winter mischief when the cold air comes.

ON THIS DAY IN 1967: A tornado outbreak in central America was the furthest north on record up to that point in winter. Severe weather hit a good portion of southeast and east-central Iowa. Two inches of hail fell on Armstrong, and more than two dozen tornadoes were reported. Five miles north of Fort Madison, a tornado killed one person and injured six. A tornado that caused F4 damage killed three people and injured 216 in St. Louis County, Missouri. Storms also affected parts of northern and central Illinois. A powerful tornado in Mason County killed one person and injured three others.

BEACH FORECAST: Click here to view the AlabamaWx Beach Forecast Center page.

For more weather news and information from James Spann and his team, visit AlabamaWx.