Stay Alert! A significant severe weather threat may develop early next week
One small tornado caused minor damage in Franklin County on Thursday, but the weather is quiet now and stays quiet through tomorrow and most of Sunday. After that, things change dramatically again as the November fast-paced weather pattern kicks in again.
Short-term weather looks good but chilly for Football Friday: temperatures in the 40s this evening with a fair sky and no real threat of heavy rain in North Alabama or Southern Tennessee (but a few showers are possible). It gets colder tonight, but warms up back into the 60s (more typical of early November) on Saturday afternoon. The next series of storm systems get close enough for some showers by Sunday evening, but there are bigger troubles on the horizon beyond that.
Rain and storms Sunday to Tuesday: Two distinct waves in the jet stream blow overhead between Sunday and Tuesday. The first one looks gentle enough: some clouds, some showers, but no severe weather. That chance of rain looks highest from about 4 PM Sunday through sunrise Monday, and the majority of that would be fairly light, uneven, and spotty.
The next system arrives Monday night into Tuesday morning, and it has the potential to cause some problems with severe weather: high winds, hail, and a tornado threat.
So let’s ask and answer some questions:
- When? In North Alabama and Southern Tennessee, we think the timeline is no earlier than 9 PM Monday and no later than 3 PM Tuesday. That’s a wide window, right? We’ll narrow it down the closer we get, but you need to be ready to pay attention during that time.
- Who/Where? A broad area of the Southeast will be impacted by this system; however, there will be an area of ‘greatest risk’ that becomes more apparent in the next few days. That includes us in the WHNT News 19 coverage area in North Alabama and Southern Tennessee.
- Why can’t you tell me right now!? We don’t ‘know’ right now. You wouldn’t want your doctor declaring you have a deadly disease without getting all available information, so in that same line of thinking – there’s uncertainty – we don’t know the specifics of exactly where and exactly when yet. This is a heads-up, pay attention, we may need to take some action down the road kind of statement.
- When will you know? We’ll have a better handle on it tomorrow, and an even better handle Sunday, and an even better handle Monday. Forecasting is a process; it’s not a one-shot deal. We adjust it as we see how the atmosphere is behaving relative to how we think it should be behaving.
- What can I do now? Mentally prepare yourself for severe weather. If it doesn’t happen, you haven’t lost anything. Make sure you have batteries in your NOAA Weather Radio and that your device has Live Alert 19 on it. By the way, Live Alert 19 will ONLY alert you if you are actually in the small box drawn for a warning (not your county – if you want county alerts, you need a NOAA Weather Radio). Go over your tornado safety plan just in case you need to use it.
There’s still much to be determined about this, so don’t let this be the last time you read/hear the forecast before Monday night!