James Spann: Ocean of humidity covers Alabama

RADAR CHECK: A number of showers, some producing heavy rain, are over Alabama this afternoon in a very moist environment. Showers are moving eastward at a pretty good clip, and so far we have had no flooding issues today. Still, the National Weather Service continues a flash flood watch for parts of central and west Alabama.

Temperatures are in the 78- to 85-degree range, well below average for the middle of August. We typically are broiling this time of the year.

TOMORROW/FRIDAY: No real change. A very deep layer of tropical moisture will continue to hang over Alabama, with scattered to numerous showers and thunderstorms both days. You might catch a glimpse of the sun a time or two, but the sky will be generally cloudy and highs hold in the 80s.

The Storm Prediction Center maintains a marginal risk of severe thunderstorms over roughly the northern half of Alabama Friday afternoon into Friday night; some of the stronger storms could produce hail and gusty winds.

THE ALABAMA WEEKEND: Still no sign of any weather change. Moist, unstable air lingers, and a few passing showers and storms are likely both Saturday and Sunday. The rain won’t be continuous, and the sun should peek out at times, but be ready for a passing shower or storm at any hour of the day or night. Highs will be mostly in the mid to upper 80s.

NEXT WEEK: The stagnant pattern rolls along. For a while, the Global Forecast System tried to bring down some drier air by midweek, but for now that idea is off the table. So we will roll with a persistence forecast and mention some risk of showers and storms daily, with the sky cloudy at times. Highs during the week look to be mostly in the upper 80s.

FRANKLIN NEARING HURRICANE STRENGTH: Franklin will move into the coast of Mexico late tonight well south of Brownsville, Texas, most likely as a category one hurricane. This afternoon top winds are 70 mph (it is a strong tropical storm).

REST OF THE TROPICAL ATLANTIC: A disturbance east of the Leeward Islands will have some potential for development in coming days, but if anything forms it will most likely recurve into the open Atlantic without touching the East Coast of the U.S. There is also a weak trough over the Bahamas with showers and storms, but development there is unlikely.

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