Brian Peters: Shower, storm chances heading upward in Alabama

Brian Peters has the midweek forecast for Alabama from Alabama NewsCenter on Vimeo.

TODAY: The latest satellite view showed a good deal of clouds over Alabama this morning, in part because of the weak tropical disturbance over south Texas. The majority of the rain today across the U.S. will come in south Texas. The surface map continues to show high pressure over the Southeast while a frontal boundary continues to stretch from the Oklahoma Panhandle across the Central Mississippi River Valley into the Mid-Atlantic states. Highs today should again reach the lower 90s across central Alabama with only isolated showers and thunderstorms.

TROPICS: The tropics are quiet for both the Atlantic and eastern Pacific basins.

REST OF THE WEEK: The Storm Prediction Center continues to forecast a marginal risk of severe storms along the frontal boundary. That risk moves closer to Alabama on Thursday and over a large chunk of the Southeast on Friday.

The upper ridge that has been in place for the last several days continues to weaken as a closed low and associated trough move out of Nebraska today. That upper low will strengthen as it moves to the vicinity of Ohio by Saturday. This will bring increased chances for thunderstorms and rain to the Southeast along with the marginal risk of severe storms on Friday. That marginal risk area will likely be kicked up to a slight risk; we can better identify the locations for boundaries as we get closer to the event. The primary threats will be damaging wind along with some large hail.

The presence of more clouds and much larger storm coverage is expected to limit our highs to the 80s. The Global Forecast System shows a high of 83 tomorrow for Birmingham, while the North American Mesoscale shows an 81. I’m not confident that the highs will be quite that low, but they should be in the range of 84 to 88. As you see in the graphic below, the 2-meter maximum temperature is forecast to be even lower.

NEXT WEEK: The upper trough goes by Saturday, so we should transition back to a summer-like pattern by Sunday. This means going back to daily, heat-driven showers and storms into next week. Highs should climb back into the lower 90s as weak ridging becomes our primary weather feature. Precipitable water values should drop back, too, but the humidity levels will remain fairly high.

LONG TERM: As we venture out into voodoo country, the GFS is suggesting a ridge over the Southeast June 29. The ridge migrates a trifle westward through July 5 as we see an area of weak lower pressure push into the Southeast from the east. This could spell a reasonably wet period for the Southeast as the lower pressure aloft combines with diurnal heating to produce numerous showers and storms. But it is voodoo, so we’ll have to wait to see if this comes to fruition.

BEACH FORECAST: Click here to see the AlabamaWx Beach Forecast Center page.

WEATHERBRAINS: You can listen to our weekly 90-minute netcast any time on the web, or on iTunes. This is the show all about weather featuring many familiar voices, including meteorologists at ABC 33/40.

SPANN AWAY: The forecast posts will be one-a-day this week while James Spann is on vacation.

For more weather news and information from James Spann, Brian Peters and other members of the James Spann team, visit AlabamaWx.

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