Er, Toto, we might as well be in Kansas… . A very strong low pressure complex to the west heads east leaving a very violent history across Texas, Arkansas, Louisiana. Mississippi and Kentucky. More severe thunderstorms and tornadoes today for Northern Alabama, Georgia and Tennessee. Timing and dynamics, however, are in our favor…. again. The Storm Prediction Center in tornado-wise Oklahoma has a large HIGH-MODERATE probability bulls-eye to the west of us and only a slight chance for severe for the State today valid until tomorrow morning. Best ingredients for widespread severe weather outbreaks translate northeast into NC and VA.
Expect afternoon non-frontal airmass thunderstorms to develop this afternoon in the warm soupy air in place (think bucket of gasoline and toaster…). Isolated cells will be severe with 50-70 mph wind gusts, large hail, heavy rain and frequent lightning. Charming. This activity de-energizes near sunset.
The cold front to the west approaches the Upstate tonight with pre-frontal thunderstorms around midnight. The front enters the Upstate in the dark near 2-3 AM, Midlands 05-08 AM with strong shear but diminishing convective available potential energy. Isolated embedded strong to severe thunderstorm with damaging wind gusts to 70 mph, hail and an isolated tornado are fair game, although not with the swarm of tornadoes seen to the west. Models are showing the front slowing as it closes the coast late Thursday, re-strengthening to severe storms over the beaches on max afternoon heating.
33 shopping days until hurricane season.
Today’s forecast cartoon:
The Storm Prediction Center’s Severe Thunderstorm and Tornado Outlook for Today: