UPDATE 3/29/20 AT 2:30 AM – The NWS has extended the Tornado Watch for Franklin (TN), Dekalb, Jackson, and Marshall counties until 5 a.m.
UPDATE 3/29/20 AT 2:15 AM – The NWS has extended the Tornado Watch for Lincoln, Moore (TN), Colbert, Cullman, Franklin, Lauderdale, Lawrence, Limestone, Madison, and Morgan (AL) counties until 5 a.m.
Temperatures rose to the low-80s Saturday afternoon, but a cold front moving in tonight brings a threat of a few severe storms.
The risk of severe storms comes AFTER 10 PM in North Alabama and Southern Middle Tennessee.
Severe storms are possible in Mississippi and West Tennessee between 6 PM and 9 PM, but from around 9 PM until 7 AM, we’ll be watching those storms in North Alabama and Southern Tennessee.
Our primary threats will be some gusty winds over 50 MPH and some hail; a tornado is possible. It’s just that time of year when we can see storms produce those kinds of things without a ‘major’ storm system rolling right overhead.
The Storm Prediction Center has upped the probability of tornadoes in Tennessee and Mississippi tonight. The 10% ‘hatched’ area means a 10% chance of a tornado within 25 miles of a point. You could look at it like this:
If the risk of a tornado on this given date according to climatology is 0.4%, this is a 250-times greater chance that a tornado could happen within 25 miles of you. It’s still not a very high number, but it speaks volumes about our confidence that tornadoes will happen within some storms tonight.
This line of storms weakens after 3 AM as it approaches Northeast Alabama and the Cumberland Plateau; that accounts for the sharp drop-off in the tornado probability level.