Friday Afternoon Weather Blog: Another Round of Heavy Weather Approaching

By: Meteorologist Ray Hawthorne Email
By: Meteorologist Ray Hawthorne Email

We continue to be in a very active weather pattern with periodic episodes of severe weather.

First, let's deal with the situation at hand. Vigorous convection has developed late this afternoon and early this afternoon in a very moist and moderately unstable environment. There is very little forcing at the large-scale, so the storms appear to have initiated along a subtle convergence axis that extends from Southwest Georgia into the Florida Panhandle. The vertical shear between the surface and 6 kilometers above the ground is in excess of 50 knots. The shear and instability are both sufficient for supercell formation within the convective line. The low-level and deep-layer shear vectors are oriented in nearly the same direction; therefore, tornadoes will not be as big of a threat as they were Sunday and early Monday. That said, tornadoes cannot be completely ruled out. The analyses and model forecasts suggest that the Western Big Bend and much of South Georgia may have at least some risk for a brief/weak tornado this afternoon or evening.

We will very carefully have to watch the southern end of the line early this evening. Even though many of the severe warnings have been in Southwest Georgia thus far, the early morning upper air data are showing a shortwave trough in deep South Texas. This upper air wave should enhance the large-scale ascent over the region toward dark, potentially causing the line to redevelop southwestward. This will extend the wind damage threat into the evening hours, but additional storm formation on the back end of the line could be serious trouble. Many areas have received more than 5 inches of rain on Thursday and additional torrential rain that trains over the same areas may produce several more inches. We urge everyone to monitor the radar or watch us on TV as we get a handle on which areas will see the heaviest rain. It's hard to pinpoint locations even several hours in advance, but the potential is clearly there for flooding wherever the storms cells end up training.

We could see a little leftover rain early Saturday morning, then improving weather is anticipated for the rest of the weekend. The models are hinting at yet another storm arriving on or around Tuesday. We will detail this in future blog posts.

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