James Spann: Storms return to Alabama very early Thursday

BEAUTIFUL SPRING DAY: With a sunny sky, temperatures are generally in the 74- to 77-degree range across north and central Alabama this afternoon, with low humidity levels. Tonight will be fair and pleasant with a low in the 55- to 60-degree range.

Tomorrow in Alabama will be warm and dry with ample sunshine, but to the west severe storms will likely develop by afternoon across much of Arkansas and adjacent states. These storms will move into our state after midnight tomorrow night.

STORMS VERY EARLY THURSDAY MORNING: The Storm Prediction Center has far West Alabama in a “marginal risk” of severe storms for the hours prior to 7 a.m. Thursday, and then the rest of the state in a “marginal risk” after 7 a.m. Thursday.

TIMING: The main window for storms will come from 2 a.m. until 10 a.m. Thursday; a line of storms will move from west to east across the state.

THREATS: Strong, gusty winds and small hail will be the primary threats; the tornado risk is low. Not zero, but low.

RAIN: Rain amounts of around one-half inch are likely; no flooding is expected.

The sky becomes partly sunny Thursday afternoon as drier air returns to the state.

FRIDAY/SATURDAY: These two days will be very warm with a partly sunny sky; we project highs in the 85- to 90-degree range. We will mention the risk of isolated afternoon and evening storms both days because of high instability values, but most communities will be dry.

SUNDAY: Another strong spring storm system will bring the chance of strong to severe thunderstorms to Alabama Sunday afternoon into Sunday night; it is simply too early to determine the magnitude of the threat and the specific modes of severe weather. At the moment it looks like the main window for these storms will come from 2 p.m. Sunday until 2 a.m. Monday.

NEXT WEEK: The sky becomes partly to mostly sunny Monday, and the day will be cooler, with a high closer to 70. Tuesday looks cool and dry; there’s a decent chance we reach the 40s early Tuesday morning. The next chance of showers and storms will come toward the end of the week, on Thursday or Friday.

Click here to see the Beach Forecast Center page.

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