Friday, March 27, 2009
Original post (5pm):
The Storm Prediction Center has modified the risk of severe weather for the Mid-South for tonight (see above graphic) and now includes all of north MS under a MODERATE RISK, right up to the TN state line. The SLIGHT RISK now encompasses most of west TN. This is in response to the flip-flopping computer models now bringing the aforementioned warm sector closer to the metro area tonight as the stronger low appears as though it will track across Arkansas. The greatest threat will be after midnight through about 6am Saturday. With this situation as dynamic as it has been, any slight shift could have big effects on the resulting weather scenario.
Be advised that the possibility of severe weather does exist, including the low threat of tornadoes, overnight and be prepared should it occur. NOAA Weather Radios should be programmed and in working order. There is also still time to sign up for severe weather warnings by email (even to your PDA) with WXLIVE! Severe Weather - you'll get the warning as soon as the National Weather Service issues it. MWN StormView Radar will have the most recent radar imagery throughout the night.
I still expect that we weill see a pretty healthy round of rain and thunderstorms tonight, likely around and after midnight though. Some small hail or a brief high wind gust is possible in our area, but the bad stuff should stay south. Look for the possibility of another inch of rain though and with the ground already saturated, it won't take that much to produce ponding or flooding of low-lying areas, underpasses, and other low points in the road. If you will be out tonight, remember the NWS mantra in flash flooding scenarios: "Turn Around, Don't Drown"! It doesn't take more than a few inches of water to float a car.
Scattered showers will stay with us Saturday, especially afternoon, as an upper level low passes overhead. The low will bring not only a few showers, but falling temps (into the 40s by evening) and windy conditions as well. Sunday looks much more pleasant, though coolish and breezy. A couple of shots at rain will appear again next week with near normal temps overall.
Thursday, March 26, 2009
Wednesday, March 25, 2009
Another round of rain is likely tonight, with a good deal of north and central MS under a Flood Watch. The heaviest rain will stay south of the state line, though everyone in the metro area will get something from it. Another dry day Thursday, with more rain and scattered t'storms poised to arrive Thursday night and early Friday as a warm front moves through and sets the region up for a possible "Big Kahuna" event Friday night. I'm thinking a good part of Friday (mid-morning to mid-afternoon probably) should actually be dry. That's up for debate though...
Friday night poses the most serious risk yet this spring. A very strong weather system, with a rapidly-developing surface low pressure that will move just to our north, will traverse the region. By afternoon, we'll be firmly in the grips of the system's warm sector, which means high humidity, incerasing wind, and unstable air. As the jet stream moves over the Mid-South late Friday, thunderstorms will break out and could rapidly become severe by late Friday afternoon. Due to expected wind shear and very buoyant air, some of these storms could become supercellular and produce tornadoes and large hail. As the strong cold front moves through overnight, a squall line will likely form along or just ahead of it, bringing the threat of damaging wind as well. The map below highlights the area that the Storm Prediction Center thinks at this time has the potential for severe weather. The hatched area reflects the greatest likelihood.
We'll continue to monitor the situation at MemphisWeather.net and provide updates throughout, via this blog and the MWN Forecast. Now would be a good time to sign up to receive FREE email messages to your PDA or email account if and when severe weather strikes. And you're in luck - MWN has just such a service - it's fast, it's accurate, and it's free! Sign up here.
Tuesday, March 24, 2009
Monday, March 23, 2009
The front stalls to our south on Wednesday so much of the metro area will likely be dry that day. However, Wednesday night will see a swift-moving upper-level low move along the front, bringing another chance of rain. The front then pulls north as a warm front Thursday with the possibility of rain continuing. Once again in an unseasonably warm and unstable airmass behind the warm front, another round of possible severe weather arrives late in the week. Models are still having some trouble distinguishing the characteristics and timing of this system, so stay tuned for more details.
Just in time for spring and severe weather season, an upgrade to one of MWN's features - WXLIVE! Severe Weather - has taken place. Visit the severe weather notification page of MWN to subscribe to receive e-mail weather warnings to your e-mail account or e-mail enabled PDA. Now, you can sign up on a county-by-county basis and only receive information for the county where YOU live or work. As fast as any other publicly-available service of its kind, the best part of it is it's FREE! If you or your company would be interested in sponsoring this service, feel free to drop me an e-mail! I like to keep MemphisWeather.net free for all users.
Friday, March 20, 2009
Though "equinox" connotes an equal amount of day and night, that is not exactly so for Memphis at 35 degrees north latitude. The actual time of the equinox is 6:44am, when the sun passes directly over the Equator. Sunrise in Memphis is at 7:03am and sunset at 7:12pm. Thus, the length of the day is 12 hrs., 9 min.! Memphis actually experienced an equal amount of day and night 4 days ago, on March 16, when the sun rose at 7:09am and set at 7:09pm. Pretty cool, huh?
So, for the first day of spring, we're looking for an absolutely gorgeous day with temps right at normal in the mid 60s. A small rain chance shows up Saturday but temps should remain near normal through then before starting to rise to slightly above normal levels to end the weekend and start next week. The next major frontal system won't affect the area until Tuesday or Wednesday of next week.
Wednesday, March 18, 2009
Past few days
Rainy, cloudy weather hung around throughout the weekend and early in the week. With the ground saturated, very little evaporation occurring due to the clouds, and warmer temperatures arriving, we ended up with dense fog Tuesday morning that lowered visibilities to near zero in many locales. The fog held temperatures back from reaching their full potential yesterday, but we still ended up with highs near 70.
Without the foggy start in most places, sunny skies and southerly wind should help temps warm rapidly from morning lows in the 40s into the mid 70s by late afternoon. The later sunset time will help keep the the evening very pleasant as well.
Thursday and beyond...
A cold front will move through very early tomorrow, bringing a slight chance of rain and mostly cloudy skies for Thursday. Temperatures will respond appropriately as highs top out in the lower to mid 60s. Skies will clear Thursday night and dry conditions will persist into early next week. Highs will climb slowly from the 60s into the lower 70s by early next week as well. The next chance of rain after Thursday will be next Tuesday/Wednesday.
Enjoy a great Spring Break week and upcoming weekend!
Thursday, March 12, 2009
Winter Weather Advisory has been cancelled for Shelby, Fayette, and Crittenden Counties. Winter Storm Warning for Tipton County downgraded to Winter Weather Advisory until 10pm.
Previous post issued at 1:00pm:
Not a whole lot has changed as the morning has gone along today. In the Memphis metro area, precipitation has been predominatly rain, with some reports of freezing precip (mainly sleet and snow) in counties north of the city (MWN StormView Radar has it handled well). We got as low as 33 degrees in Bartlett this morning with plain Jane rain. Low-level warm air between 1-3,000 feet has saved us today!
I expect mostly rain to continue this afternoon, with a report of sleet here or there possible in the metro. Precipitation should taper off this evening to drizzle and temps will approach freezing, particularly in northern suburbs, so some freezing drizzle is possible. Another round of precipitation accompanies a low moving out of Texas late tonight. Right now, I think most of that will stay just south of the state line where air is warmer, but the northern fringes of it could skirt Crittenden, Shelby, and Fayette counties after 3am or so. This could result in a chance of mixed precipitation again late tonight. Will evaulate further later today...
For a complete list of weather-related closings throughout the Mid-South, visit the WMC-TV closings page.
Wednesday, March 11, 2009
NWS-MEMPHIS TN / MEMPHISWEATHER.NET
640 AM CDT WED MAR 11 2009
...WINTER WEATHER TO RETURN TO MUCH OF THE MIDSOUTH...
A COLD FRONT WILL CONTINUE PUSHING SOUTH TODAY. THE FRONT WILL EVENTUALLY STALL ALONG THE GULF COAST AS AN AREA OF LOW PRESSURE DEVELOPS ALONG THE FRONT TONIGHT INTO THURSDAY. THIS WILL SPREAD MOISTURE NORTHWARD INTO THE MIDSOUTH. COLD ARCTIC AIR WILL FILTER INTO THE MIDSOUTH TODAY BEHIND THE FRONT. THE COMBINATION OF THE COLD AIR AND MOISTURE FROM THE LOW PRESSURE SYSTEM ALONG THE GULF COAST WILL PRODUCE WINTER PRECIPITATION OVER MUCH OF THE MIDSOUTH BEGINNING LATE TONIGHT CONTINUING INTO THURSDAY.
...WINTER STORM WATCH IN EFFECT FROM 4 AM TO 7 PM CDT THURSDAY FOR MEMPHIS METRO EXCEPT DESOTO COUNTY...
THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN MEMPHIS HAS ISSUED A WINTER STORM WATCH WHICH IS IN EFFECT FROM LATE TONIGHT THROUGH THURSDAY EVENING.
RAIN WILL BEGIN LATE THIS EVENING ACROSS EAST-CENTRAL ARKANSAS AND SOUTHWEST TENNESSEE. RAIN WILL CHANGE OVER TO FREEZING RAIN OR SLEET SHORTLY BEFORE SUNRISE. FREEZING RAIN OR SLEET WILL CONTINUE TO OCCUR THROUGH THE MORNING INTO THE AFTERNOON. A CHANGEOVER TO SNOW COULD OCCUR IN AREAS NORTH OF INTERSTATE 40. ICE ACCUMULATIONS WILL LIKELY BE AROUND A QUARTER OF AN INCH. ONE TO TWO INCHES OF SLEET OR SNOW ACCUMULATION IS EXPECTED.
A WINTER STORM WATCH MEANS THERE IS A POTENTIAL FOR SIGNIFICANT SNOW...SLEET...OR ICE ACCUMULATIONS THAT MAY IMPACT TRAVEL.CONTINUE TO MONITOR THE LATEST FORECASTS.
...WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY IN EFFECT FROM 4 AM TO 7 PM CDT THURSDAY FOR DESOTO COUNTY...
THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN MEMPHIS HAS ISSUED A WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY FOR FREEZING RAIN...WHICH IS IN EFFECT FROM 4 AM TO 7 PM CDT THURSDAY.
RAIN WILL BEGIN TO SPREAD NORTHWARD INTO PORTIONS OF EAST ARKANSAS AND EXTREME NORTHWEST MISSISSIPPI LATE THIS EVENING. RAIN WILL CHANGE OVER TO FREEZING RAIN DURING THE EARLY MORNING HOURS AS TEMPERATURES DROP TO 32 DEGREES. THE FREEZING RAIN WILL CONTINUE DURING THE DAY ON THURSDAY AS TEMPERATURES HOVER AROUND THE FREEZING MARK. ICE ACCUMULATIONS AROUND A TENTH OF AN INCH CAN BE EXPECTED IN THE ADVISORY AREA.
CLICK A WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY MEANS THAT PERIODS OF SNOW...SLEET...OR FREEZING RAIN WILL CAUSE TRAVEL DIFFICULTIES. BEPREPARED FOR SLIPPERY ROADS AND LIMITED VISIBILITIES AND USE CAUTION WHILE DRIVING.
Tuesday, March 10, 2009
A strong early spring cold front is approaching tonight, accompanied by a line of showers and thunderstorms. Nothing severe is expected from this line as it moves into the Memphis area after midnight. Rain will linger through the morning hours Wednesday, but the main feature of this front is the cold temperatures just behind it. Tomorrow afternoon will see temps some 35 degrees colder than the past few afternoons!!
The front will stall out well to our south and sit across the Gulf Coast states, while the jet stream level winds will continue to blow from the southwest. This will set the stage for a very interesting forecast for the next few days as upper-level impulses move along and behind the front with the upper-level wind. The first one of these arrives Thursday morning, bringing a round of precipitation. I believe that in the Memphis area, and along the I-40 corridor, we'll be right on the edge of possible wintry precip. Models today have been vascillating between light rain, snow, and sleet for Thursday morning. Hopefully I'll have a better feeling about it tomorrow, but given that this is almost mid-March in Memphis I'm betting that we won't know exactly what we'll get until it actually arrives. For now, my forecast carries a chance of a wintry mix.
The first impulse should move out by Thursday afternoon, but another could arrive on Friday. Once again, morning temperatures could be critical and I can't rule out another chance of a wintry mix as lows look to again be in the low to mid 30s. Though this scenario will play out with a stronger low on Saturday, I do think we'll finally be warm enough to support all rain this time around, so Saturday looks wet and cool right now. Highs in the 40s is the best we will do until at least Saturday, so bundle up, bring the umbrella, and keep the ice scraper handy, JUST IN CASE. ;-) I'll update this blog as conditions warrant.
Monday, March 9, 2009
Sunday, March 8, 2009
The front is followed by cooler and much drier air, though it won't move far enough south of the city for us to see too much of that cool dry air. Overnight lows will be about 10 degrees cooler than last night, but still in the mid 50s. Tomorrow will see highs rebound again into the mid 70s as the front pulls back to our north as a warm front.
Friday, March 6, 2009
Tuesday, March 3, 2009
Since I started writing forecasts for Memphis and keeping forecast accuracy statistics in January 1998 (hard to believe I'm into my 12th year!), my temperature forecasts have placed 1st or 2nd EVERY month except March 1999 and June 2006 (98.6% of the time) and I've beaten all other sources on a monthly average 88.9% of the time. Fore more details, visit my forecast accuracy page. Or, for today's "most accurate publicly-available forecast for the city of Memphis," click here!
On a separate note, accuracy stats for the Nested Grid Model (NGM) will no longer be available as that particular model's run of service ended on March 2. It had fallen behind the times technologically and was generally bringing up the rear as far as accuracy was concerned, as enhancements were being directed the past several years to the NAM and GFS. Farewell, NGM!
Monday, March 2, 2009
The February statistics have been compiled and Memphis officially ended up warmer and drier than an average February. Here is the monthly recap from the NWS. The average temperature was 47.9 degrees, which was a whopping 3.0 degrees above normal! The highest temp for the month was 74 degrees on the 18th and the lowest was 21, on the 4th and 5th. Precipitation totaled 3.26", which is a little more than an inch below normal. There were 11 days it dropped to or below freezing, 2 below normal. The 3.0" of snow officially measured on 2/28 brings our seasonal total to 3.8".
In Bartlett, WXLIVE! recorded an average temperature was 46.6 degrees, a max of 73.5 on the 18th and a min of 17.3 degrees on the 5th. Precipitation totaled 2.22", though some of the recorded precipitation on 3/1 of 0.62" was snow that fell on the 28th and was recorded on the 1st. Total snowfall for the month was 8.9" - which includes snow that fell in the wee morning hours on the 1st.
As for the rest of the "first week of spring," it will definitely start to feel more spring-like! After one more cold day today, the jetstream will begin lifting to the north, signaling a pattern shift for the southeast U.S. Warmer high pressure takes control, wind shifts to the south by Wednesday, and highs jump back up to 70+ by Thursday. More details can be found in the MWN Forecast.
Sunday, March 1, 2009
Memphis City Schools, Shelby County Schools, and DeSoto County Schools have announced that they will be OPEN on Monday.
A full list of closings can be found on WMC-TV's website (link here or see the link in the blog links to the right).
The temp is nearing the freezing mark and melting has commenced at WXLIVE! sensors. Rainfall totals are increasing but only because of melting. Will try and empty snow from bucket and reset rain amount.