James Spann: Mild, wet weekend ahead for Alabama

James Spann: One more dry day for Alabama before rain returns from Alabama NewsCenter on Vimeo.

ONE MORE DRY DAY: We are starting the day with temperatures all over the board; some of the colder pockets are in the upper 20s, while many other places are in the 35- to 40-degree range. The sky will stay sunny this morning, but clouds begin to increase this afternoon as temperatures warm into the 60s. A band of showers will move in here tonight from the south; nothing too heavy.

WET WEEKEND: Expect occasional showers and thunderstorms over the weekend as a very moist air mass settles into the state. Rain amounts of 1 to 2 inches are likely, with potential for heavier amounts over the Tennessee Valley of North Alabama, where a flood watch has been issued.

For those planning events outdoors, there will certainly be some breaks in the rain, but showers and storms are possible at any hour tomorrow and Sunday, and a few heavy downpours are likely. For now the Storm Prediction Center does not have any severe weather risk defined for the northern half of Alabama, but I would not be surprised if it introduces a marginal risk for parts of the state Sunday, since instability values will be creeping up along with stronger wind fields.

Temperatures over the weekend will be mild; we rise into the upper 60s tomorrow, and Sunday’s high will be pretty close to 70 degrees.

NEXT WEEK: We will maintain the chance of lingering showers Monday, but Tuesday and Wednesday will be drier with only a small risk of a shower both days. Rain chances will increase again late in the week as a surface front approaches. The week will be very mild for February, with highs in the 60s and low 70s. No sign of any real Arctic cold around here for the next 10 days or so.

STORM SURVEYS: National Weather Service Birmingham has now identified five small tornadoes that touched down early Wednesday morning, including an EF-1 at Gallion, east of Demopolis. EF-0 damage was found near Jemison in Chilton County, near York in Sumter County, near Billinsgley in Autauga County and near Randolph in Bibb County.

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