Severe Threat For Late Monday Through Early Tuesday; Enhanced Risk Added

As of this morning’s webinar with NWS Birmingham, we are still looking at the potential for strong to severe storms across Central Alabama late Monday afternoon through early Tuesday morning. Confidence is growing that this event will be more active than the previous severe events that we had over the past couple of weeks.

NWS Birmingham has introduced an Enhanced Risk (level 3 of 5) for severe storms for the western and southwestern parts of the area mainly west of a line from Vernon (Lamar Co.) to Northport (Tuscaloosa Co.) to Sweet Water (Marengo Co.). A Slight Risk (level 2 of 5) is up for location east of that to a line stretching from Gadsden (Etowah Co.) to Wedowee (Randolph Co.) to Valley (Chambers Co.). The northeast corner of the area east of the Slight Risk is under a Marginal Risk (level 1 of 5).

The main window for strong to severe storms has been extended a couple more hours, now going from 4:00 pm Monday to 6:00 am Tuesday. As shown above, the western third of the area could see those storms from 4:00 pm to 9:00 pm, the central locations from 7:00 pm to 1:00 am, and the eastern parts from 11:00 pm to 6:00 am.

All modes of severe weather will be possible: tornadoes, damaging winds up to and exceeding 70 MPH, and hail of 1-inch in diameter or greater. The greatest threat will be in the Enhanced Risk locations, but it doesn’t matter what color you under on the above map, all of Central Alabama is in a risk for severe storms.

One new wrinkle that could potentially add to the risks over the eastern half of the area is the latest model run shows another surface low that may form over the Gulf of Mexico and move up into the area from the southwest and move north-northeast. If that occurs, we could see an enhancement of the potential of severe storms for locations along and east of the I-65 corridor. I’ll need to see another run or two of the forecast models to see if they continue to stick with this or goes back to what we’ve seen in previous runs.

STP values from the high-resolution NAM valid at 12:00 am Tuesday.

The latest high-resolution NAM continues to show elevated Significant Tornado Parameters across much of Central Alabama with values reaching 4.0-5.0 range, which now seems more in line with what we should expect with the other models. In my post last night, numbers were coming in a little hot, but I feel much better with what is showing at this point. Helicity and shear across the area are still showing elevated numbers, and the surface-based instability is still in the 500-1500 J/kg range from north to south. See my previous post for detailed information about the severe weather ingredients.

Go ahead and have your safety kits prepared and your safe place ready to go just in case your location goes under a warning during the event on Monday night into Tuesday morning. Since this will be affecting some people while asleep, have a trusty way of getting an alert that will wake you up. Be sure to have fresh batteries in your flashlights and in your NOAA WeatherRadios. Keep your smartphones charged and have a reliable news app downloaded that has the capability to show a live video feed so you can watch tornado coverage from your safe place.

Updates will continue throughout the day today and through the event on Monday and Tuesday. Have a great Sunday!

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