Severe storms possible Friday Afternoon

Summer storms can be some of the worst weather you’ll deal with in a calendar year: even if they aren’t ‘severe’ by definition (winds over 58 MPH and hail larger than a quarter).

The Storm Prediction Center outlines a *SLIGHT RISK* of severe weather for Friday: mainly for a lower-end threat of high winds and hail.

 

Timing exactly where the stronger storms will develop will depend on a few factors: Morning rain may literally put a damper on the storms if the clouds hang around, but any breaks in the clouds (and heating from the sun) will act to “recharge” the atmosphere. Exact timing of when the storms will fire up will depend on any lurking outflow boundaries from early Friday morning. We’ll be watching this development closely!

For now, we expect the window of development to occur between 10am and 1pm for areas west of I-65, and 12p-5pm for areas east of I-65. With that said, we do anticipate storms to continue through late Friday afternoon and evening, so consider this information as a “when should I expect the storms to begin” timeframe.

What kind of impacts will the storms bring? The most likely impact from these storms will be damaging “straight line” winds (50-60 mph): Downed trees, downed powerlines, and if these get near areas where water sports are happening, then it’s possible that these winds may be strong enough to capsize a small vessel (similar to an event that occurred last week on Smith Lake).

Small hail may be possible, as well as frequent lightning. We are not able to rule out the small threat of a tornado, but the “straight line” winds will be greater in likelihood of producing disruptive impacts throughout the Tennessee Valley. Depending on how slow these storms move, flash flooding might also be a potential threat.

Please keep these impacts in mind if you plan to be participating in recreational activities outdoors, like the Hydrofest at Lake Guntersville. You can monitor the heavy storms while you are on the go with WHNT.com’s Interactive Radar or swipe over to the radar feature on Live Alert 19!