Moisture from Nicholas keeps rain chances high into weekend
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) - The lack of a strong steering pattern has been keeping Tropical Depression Nicholas from moving too fast, which brought the threat of flooding to portions of the Gulf Coast Wednesday. Some of the rain was slowly nearing the western viewing area late Wednesday morning, but the higher moisture and lift associated with Nicholas will keep rain chances elevated through the weekend.
Heavy rain from Nicholas will continue to pose a risk for life-threatening flash flooding along the central Gulf Coast today. There is also a risk for heavy rain and flooding with showers/storms along a cold front moving through the Northeast to the Ohio and Tennessee Valleys. pic.twitter.com/iT65BH5VPp— NWS Weather Prediction Center (@NWSWPC) September 15, 2021
Nicholas was centered near the Gulf Coast along the Texas and Louisiana border Wednesday morning, and is forecast to move very little over the next several days. The lack of troughs of low pressure aloft and a weaker influence from the ridge of high pressure in the Atlantic will keep the tropical depression stuck in the region.
With enough high atmospheric moisture content across the area, daytime heating and help from the east coast sea breeze will keep the odds of showers and thunderstorms elevated throughout the area Wednesday and Thursday. The chances of rain will linger into the overnight hours, too.
As the weekend nears, not much change is in the forecast. The low-level energy associated with Nicholas is forecast to dissipate Friday and into the weekend. Guidance models hint at a weak trough of low pressure to develop in the Southeast Thursday into Friday, which would bring in some mid-level energy through the area. This energy, along with the high atmospheric moisture, will keep rain chances on the higher side Friday through Sunday (at least).
Rainfall totals between Wednesday and Monday morning are forecast to be the highest along the Franklin County coast (~3 inches) and gradually decrease eastward to 1 to 2 inches along the I-75 corridor based on projections from the Weather Prediction Center. But the American GFS ensemble average is hinting at 1 to 2 inches during that same time period across the area.
Because of the potential of sea breeze and outflow boundaries inducing showers and storms, the high moisture content, reasonable convective energy and with the GFS ensemble average “smoothing out” and not including potential convective processes, this meteorologist is inclined to lean toward the WPC’s forecast with locally higher amounts in the eastern Big Bend and south-central Georgia.
Weekend plans? Make sure to include an umbrella and keep an eye on the radar. To get radar imagery at any time along with watches and warnings, be sure to download the WCTV Pinpoint Weather App.
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