Dothan Area Weather Discussion Dec 23

Near Term [Tonight]...

The 18 Utc Regional Surface Analysis Showed A 1022 Mb High
Pressure Ridge Centered Over North Fl, And An Approaching Cold
Front Over Ok And Tx. Vapor Imagery And Upper Air Data Showed
Mostly Zonal Flow Over The Conus, With Several Short Waves
Translating Quickly Eastward.

The First Wave Was Over Al, And Has Had Little Effect On Our Weather Other Than To Increase The High Level Clouds. (Too Dry In The Lower To Mid Troposphere For Rain). The Slowly Increasing Boundary Layer Moisture And Upper Level Clouds Will Keep Temperatures Above Freezing, But Lows May Drop Into The Upper 30s Over Our Northeast Fl Zones.

Lows Will Be Much Warmer West Of The Apalachicola River- In The Mid To Upper 40s.

Short Term [Monday Through Wednesday Night]...

The Fast Zonal Flow In The Mid-Upper Troposphere Will Quickly
Amplify Monday And Tuesday As A Progressive Major Trough Develops Over The Western Conus.

An Initial Short Wave (Currently Over Nm) Will Drag A Cold Front Close To Our Forecast Area On Monday, But This Front Will Stall To Our North. Nonetheless, There Should Be Enough Deep Layer Moisture And Q-G Forcing For At Least A Chance Of Rain, Mainly Around Dothan And Albany Where The Pop Will Be Around 40%.

Rain Chances Will Decrease A Bit Monday Night And Early Tuesday As The Aforementioned Front Moves Farther North, Ahead Of The Main Trough (A Strong One At That) In The Southern Plains.

While Rain Will Be Likely Around Dothan And Albany Tuesday (Closer To The Best Deep Layer Moisture And Q-G Forcing Associated With The Warm Front), The Highest Pop Will Be Overnight On Christmas As A Strong Cold Front Moves Through The Region.

Temperatures Will Return To Above-Average Levels Monday And
Tuesday, Most Notably During The Overnight Hours. (Cloud Cover And
Onshore Winds Traveling Over The Now-Chilly Shelf Waters Along The Northwest Gulf Coast) Will Prevent Highs From Getting Above The Mid 70s. High Temperatures Behind The Front On Wednesday Will Range From The Upper 50s (North) To Lower 60s (South).

Not Much Has Changed Regarding The Large Scale Setup For Severe Storms.

Although Sbcape Values Will Be Unusually High For This Time Of Year (500-1000 J/Kg In The Fl Panhandle) Christmas Afternoon, And The Vertical Wind Shear Will Be Increasing, It Is Unclear How Much Large Scale Forcing There Would Be With The Warm Front Well To Our North And The Cold Front Well To Our West.

Typically Such Broad, Warm Air Advection Regimes Mean Shallow
Weak, Moist Convection, Often In Showery Convergence Bands. Thus
Its Questionable How Much Severe Weather We Would Get Christmas Day.

Christmas Night Is A Different Story. There Should Be Plenty Of Deep Layer Moisture, Q-G Forcing, Surface Convergence, And Vertical Wind Shear To Support Storm Organization. We Should Get A Better Idea Of The Convective Mode Monday When We Begin Getting Convection Allowing Model Runs That Go Out That Far In Time, But Right Now We Think A Fairly Strong Qlcs Is Likely To Precede The Cold Front Christmas Evening Through Early Wednesday.

This Means The Primary Threat Would Be Damaging Wind Gusts, Though Isolated Tornadoes Would Be Possible As Well (Especially In Discrete Cells Ahead Of The Main Squall Line, And In Any Bookend Vortices That Develop In The Favored Portions Of Expected Lewp Signatures).

With Such Favorable Wind And Moisture Profiles, Healthy 700-500 Mb Lapse Rates, And Large Scale Forcing, Why Only A "Slight Risk"? There Are A Couple Of Potentially Limiting Factors.

The 12 Utc Gfs And Ecmwf Both Forecast The Strongest Sbcape To Be Quickly Shunted Southward Into The Gulf Of Mexico Overnight On
Tuesday, Which Could Keep The Primary Threat Confined To The
Region West Of The Apalachicola River.

Another Limiting Factor Could Be The Recently Chilled Shelf Waters Along The Northwest Fl Coast. Strong, Cold, Offshore Surface Winds On Friday And Saturday Caused Upwelling Along The Coast, Sending Ssts Into The Upper 50s To Lower 60s.

This Could Cause A Shallow, Stable Marine Layer To Develop Near The Coast, Which Could Keep Storms Slightly Elevated (Reducing The Threat Of Damaging Winds). These Types Of Subtleties Are Difficult To Forecast This Far Out. For Now The Main Point To Take Away From This Is That Conditions Point To At Least A "Slight Risk" Of Severe Storms Christmas Afternoon Through Early Wednesday, And That Its A Good Idea To Monitor Later Forecasts For Updates.

Long Term [Thursday Through Sunday]...

Progressive Pattern Is Forecast To Continue Across The Conus Through The End Of Next Week.

Dry And Cool Conditions Are Expected For Thursday With Highs Generally In The 50s And Lows Dropping Close To Freezing.

By Friday, Another Storm System Will Begin To Organize Over The Southern Plains, With Weak Return Flow Setting Up Across The Northern Gulf Coast.

Expect To See A Moderation Of Temperatures For Friday, Followed By Increased Rain Chance Friday Night Into Saturday As The Next Front Crosses The Area.

Another Shot Of Dry And Cool Air Will Follow The Front For Sunday.

Aviation [Through 18z Monday]...

Mid And Higher Level Clouds Will Gradually Overspread The Area
And Lower Through The Taf Cycle.

Ceilings Are Expected To Remain Vfr At All Sites Until Perhaps 15z At Dhn When Mvfr Ceilings Will Become Possible As Low Level Moisture Increases From The South.

Marine...

Winds And Seas Will Increase To Moderate Levels Monday, Then
Likely To Advisory Levels Tuesday And Wednesday As The Cold Front
Affects The Area.

Fire Weather...

Moist And Unsettled Conditions Are Expected Monday And Especially On Tuesday As A Strong Storm System Moves Through The Region.

Drier Air Will Move In Behind This Storm System For Much Of Next Week, But Red Flag Conditions Are Not Anticipated.

Hydrology...

River Stages Continued To Be Below Action Stage, And This Will
Continue At Least Through Monday.

Preliminary Point Temps/Pops...

Tallahassee 42 71 54 71 59 / 0 20 10 30 70
Panama City 52 71 60 72 58 / 10 40 30 40 70
Dothan 47 70 56 71 51 / 10 50 30 60 80
Albany 43 68 54 70 55 / 10 40 20 60 70
Valdosta 41 69 54 72 59 / 0 20 10 30 70
Cross City 38 71 51 75 59 / 0 10 10 10 40
Apalachicola 50 69 60 70 61 / 0 20 10 30 70

Tae Watches/Warnings/Advisories...

Fl...None.
Ga...None.
Al...None.
Gm...None.


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