Heavy tropical downpours through Wednesday morning: more than 1-3″ of rainfall possible

The same ‘leftover’ energy from Barry that brought extremely heavy rain in Arkansas Tuesday morning sends more heavy rain and thunderstorms into Mississippi, Tennessee and Alabama through early Wednesday.

Heavy rain fell in Lauderdale County early Wednesday morning with some areas seeing over two inches of rainfall. A *FLASH FLOOD WARNING* was issued until 9:30am for Lauderdale and Colbert Counties.

Forecast models in general do a less-than-adequate job of pinpointing rainfall like this; however, they can give us a shadow of what those big, heavy downpours can do.

The ‘Futurecast’ we show on WHNT News 19 is called the Baron 3K.  It’s a model built on a three-kilometer grid; in other words, imagine a grid over the United States in which each box is 3km on each side.  Real-world thunderstorms fit inside those boxes, so while the model knows they should be there, too many of the details are ‘falling through the cracks’ (or happening in between the grid spaces).

So, while it can’t be sure that it will rain an exact amount at an exact location, when it shows something like this…you pay attention:

What can we make of this?

  • Some very heavy rainfall is possible near Northwest Alabama, but it will not be uniform.  Isolated spots could get more than 3-4 inches of rain; others will get very little.
  • We expect more storms in Lauderdale, Colbert, Franklin (AL), and Marion (AL) Counties. Flash flooding is possible!
  • Those storms become a little less widespread and a little less intense as they track east through the Huntsville-Decatur area early in the day.
  • Most of Wednesday’s rain happens early in the day (before noon).  Only a few isolated storms happen between noon and 7 PM.

Track heavy storms with WHNT.com’s Interactive Radar or swipe over to the radar feature on Live Alert 19!

Looking for the rest of the forecast? It’s always online at WHNT.com/Weather and in the “Daily Forecast” section on Live Alert 19!

-Jason
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