James Spann: Dry weather continues for Alabama through the weekend

BLUE SKY: We have nothing but sunshine across Alabama this afternoon as a very dry air mass covers the state. Temperatures are only in the low to mid 40s; the average high for Birmingham on Feb. 21 is 60. Tonight will be clear and cold with another freeze; most places will see a low in the 20s early Saturday morning.

THE ALABAMA WEEKEND: Dry weather continues. Saturday will feature another sunny sky with a high in the upper 50s. Clouds increase Sunday, but the day will remain rain-free with a high between 57 and 60.

NEXT WEEK: Monday will be a cloudy day with occasional showers; a thunderstorm is possible as well, but no severe storms are expected. On Tuesday, the best chance of rain shifts down into far south Alabama; the rest of the state will be mostly cloudy and mild, with a high in the 60s. A cold front brings a chance of showers Wednesday along with colder air; temperatures will likely fall into the 40s during the day with a brisk north wind. Then, cold and dry weather is likely Thursday and Friday.

RAIN UPDATE: Birmingham‘s official rain total so far for February is 12.31 inches. That makes this the third-wettest February on record for now, behind February 1961 (17.67 inches) and February 1903 (15.86 inches).

These are rain totals for February so far from our team of Skywatchers:

  • Vestavia Hills — 16.9 inches
  • Crestwood — 16 inches
  • Coker — 15.81 inches
  • Remlap — 14.55 inches
  • Black Creek — 14.22 inches
  • Alexander City — 14.01 inches
  • Cottondale — 13.07 inches
  • Weaver — 13.01 inches

ON THIS DATE IN 1971: A massive tornado outbreak occurred in the Delta region of northeastern Louisiana and Mississippi. The first significant tornado touched down about 2:50 p.m. in Louisiana and crossed into Mississippi. Forty-six were killed by this twister, which struck the towns of Dehli and Inverness. In all, 121 people lost their lives that day, including 110 in Mississippi. A total of 1,600 people were injured and 900 homes severely damaged or destroyed. The total loss was around $19 million.

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