James Spann: Occasional showers, storms for Alabama through the weekend

RADAR CHECK: Showers are widely scattered over the northern half of Alabama this afternoon; they are more numerous over the southern half of the state. We also note strong storms over north Mississippi; some of the ones there have reached severe limits. Away from the showers, temperatures are mostly in the low 90s.

We will maintain some risk of a shower or storm in scattered spots tonight as short-wave energy approaches from the northwest.

FRIDAY THROUGH THE WEEKEND: A rather unsettled weather pattern sets up across Alabama; on these three days the sky will be cloudy at times with scattered to numerous showers and thunderstorms. The best chance of showers and storms will come during the afternoon and evening hours, but some late-night and morning rain can’t be ruled out. With only a limited amount of sun heat levels will come down, with highs in the mid to upper 80s.

The Storm Prediction Center maintains a marginal risk (level 1 of 5) of severe storms north of I-20 tomorrow; the main threat will come from small hail and strong, gusty straight-line winds.

NEXT WEEK: We will maintain a pretty good chance of showers and storms Monday and Tuesday, but global models continue to suggest drier air will creep into the northern half of Alabama Wednesday through Friday with increasing amounts of sun, lower humidity and cooler nights. Scattered showers will remain possible over south Alabama over the latter half of the week.

TROPICS: Subtropical Storm Ernesto in the North Atlantic is generating winds of 45 mph; it is moving northeast and will remain far from land. A tropical wave in the Atlantic will approach the Windward Islands in a few days, but odds of development remain low because of harsh environmental conditions. The rest of the Atlantic basin is quiet.

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