October 19, 2020

Alabama weather: James Spann says rainy today with severe storms possible Wednesday

National Weather Service offices in Huntsville and Birmingham continue a flash flood watch for roughly the northern half of the state today, but the good news is that the rain won’t be as heavy or as widespread as Monday.

Additional rain amounts over the next 24 hours should be around one-half inch to 1 inch. Creeks, streams and rivers remain swollen and in some cases out of the their banks.

The Storm Prediction Center has defined a low-end marginal risk (level 1 out of 5) of severe storms today for parts of central Alabama. A few storms this afternoon could produce gusty winds or small hail, but the overall severe weather threat is low.

Wednesday will be mild and breezy with a few showers possible, but a decent part of the day will be dry. Temperatures will rise into the low 70s by afternoon ahead of an approaching cold front.

That front will push a band of strong, possibly severe thunderstorms into Alabama Wednesday night. Models continue to suggest low surface-based instability values over the state, which should limit the overall threat. The SPC has removed the enhanced risk but maintains a slight risk (level 2 of 5) for much of the state Wednesday night into early Thursday morning.

TIMING: The window for strong to severe storms will open up around 9 Wednesday night over west Alabama. The better chance of a few severe storms could very well hold off until after midnight for Birmingham and points east. The threat will wind down early Thursday morning.

THREATS: Heavier storms could produce hail, damaging winds and possibly a brief tornado or two. For now the overall tornado threat looks fairly low, but certainly not zero.

RAIN: Rain amounts of one-half to 1 inch are likely Wednesday night, and with the ground totally saturated some flooding issues could develop overnight.

Rain and storms will end early in the day Thursday, and we could see some clearing late in the day with a high in the 50s.

Republished from the Alabama Newscenter.