James Spann: Scattered to numerous showers, storms for Alabama in coming days

RADAR CHECK: We have your classic case of random, slow-moving, scattered showers and thunderstorms across Alabama this afternoon. They are moving slowly to the east and will fade after sunset. Temperatures are mostly in the 85- to 90-degree range over the northern half of the state, but a few spots in south Alabama have reached the mid 90s.

FRIDAY AND THE WEEKEND: High precipitable water values will remain over Alabama, and each day we will have scattered to numerous showers and thunderstorms, mostly between 1 and 11 p.m. Of course, there’s always some chance of a late-night or morning shower as well. Odds of any one spot getting wet all three days will be in the 40% to 60% range, and afternoon highs will be between 87 and 91 degrees for most communities. Like most summer weekends, there will be no way of knowing in advance exactly when and where the storms will pop up; you just have to watch radar trends if you have something planned outdoors.

NEXT WEEK: A surface front will approach Alabama and should provide an increase in the coverage of showers and storms Monday and Tuesday. The Global Forecast System continues to hint that a surge of drier air will temporarily creep into the northern counties of the state Wednesday. Then, moisture moves northward again with scattered storms back in the forecast Thursday and Friday.

TROPICS: The Atlantic basin remains very quiet, and tropical storm formation is not expected through early next week.

ON THIS DATE IN 1996: A massive rainstorm in north-central and northeast Illinois led to widespread flooding. Aurora reported 16.94 inches of rain, establishing a state record for the most rain in a single day. Other heavy totals included 13.6 inches at Joliet, 9.24 inches in Wheaton, 8.09 inches in DeKalb and 7.82 inches at Elgin. This event is often called “the second most damaging weather disaster in Illinois history.”

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