This afternoon we’ve dealt with a cloudy sky and a steady light rain in many spots. The wet weather will gradually taper off overnight as an easterly flow takes over across Alabama. We will have some lingering showers and clouds during the evening, with lows in the upper 60s tonight. A broad surface high to our northeast will send a surge of dry air in tomorrow, with morning clouds giving way to sunshine. Highs will be reaching the lower 90s during the afternoon, with a light east-southeast breeze for the final day of the month.
The weather for the rest of the work-week will be quite seasonal across our area. We will enjoy pleasant mornings, with lows near 70-degrees and rather hot afternoons. It will feel increasingly humid throughout the week, with highs back in the middle 90s by Friday afternoon. A cold front will approach the area late on Friday and this will bring a chance of isolated showers and thunderstorms Friday night. A stray shower can’t be ruled out on Saturday, mainly early on, with a mix of clouds and sun in the afternoon. Highs for the first big college football Saturday will reach the low 90s in Auburn, Tuscaloosa, and Birmingham. Some slightly cooler air will drop in for Sunday and Monday, with highs back in the lower 90s.
Earl developed into a major hurricane this afternoon. The cyclone passed about 60 miles northeast of St. Thomas and at last check was positioned about 120 miles northeast of San Juan, Puerto Rico. Earl is a category 4, with maximum sustained winds of 135 mph and the system may grow stronger. The good news is that Earl is curving northward and should not reach the Gulf of Mexico. The same goes for newly formed Tropical Storm Fiona, which is expected to turn northwest over the next 48 hours. Danielle in the meantime has pulled well away from the United States and this system continues to track into the northern Atlantic.
Fox 6 Meteorologist
East Alabama and West Georgia are in for a bit of a dry spell this week and probably beyond. High pressure at both the surface and aloft will take over the eastern U.S. and its influence will extend deep into the southern states.
With more sunshine, the heat will be back. It won't be as extreme as what we experienced through the month of August, but will put us above 90º most days. The lows will be a bit more seasonable, with some areas falling into the 60s for morning lows.
This high in the East will affect the activity coming this way out of the tropical Atlantic, as it helps to recurve Hurricane Earl north. Current projections have Earl just brushing past some of the easternmost portions of the coast, including the Outer Banks of North Carolina and possibly Cape Cod further north. The system following Earl - now Tropical Storm Fiona - might ultimately be more of a threat, but that's at least a week away.
Sunday's rain and "cooler" weather we're a welcome change after such a hot and at times dry summer. We picked up .76" of rain at Huntsville International Airport and it didn't all come in a 15 minute deluge. For much of the area the rain was steady and lasted for several hours. The high of 80 was our lowest since May 21st! Summer is not over yet though...I see more 90s in our future...but at least over the last week we have been seeing those hints of fall in the air!
WAFF 48 Storm Team
Earl is now a major Category 3 hurricane battering the northern Leeward islands this morning. Could become a category 4 storm in the next 48 hours. Earl could have an encounter with the US East Coast later this week. Then, we have next system which would eventually become Fiona right behind it. Things are getting very busy in the tropics.
HURRICANE EARL ADVISORY NUMBER 21
NWS TPC/NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL AL072010
1100 AM AST MON AUG 30 2010
...EARL BECOMES A MAJOR HURRICANE...
SUMMARY OF 1100 AM AST...1500 UTC...INFORMATION
ABOUT 95 MI...150 KM ENE OF ST. THOMAS
ABOUT 165 MI...265 KM E OF SAN JUAN PUERTO RICO
MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS...120 MPH...195 KM/HR
PRESENT MOVEMENT...WNW OR 285 DEGREES AT 15 MPH...24 KM/HR
MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE...960 MB...28.35 INCHES
WATCHES AND WARNINGS
CHANGES WITH THIS ADVISORY...
A HURRICANE WARNING HAS BEEN ISSUED FOR THE PUERTO RICAN ISLANDS OF
CULEBRA AND VIEQUES.
THE GOVERNMENT OF ANTIGUA AND BARBUDA HAS CHANGED THE HURRICANE
WARNING FOR ANTIGUA...BARBUDA...MONTSERRAT...ST. KITTS...AND NEVIS
TO A TROPICAL STORM WARNING.
THE GOVERNMENT OF THE BAHAMAS HAS ISSUED A TROPICAL STORM WATCH FOR
THE TURKS AND CAICOS ISLANDS.
SUMMARY OF WATCHES AND WARNINGS IN EFFECT...
A HURRICANE WARNING IS IN EFFECT FOR...
* SAINT MARTIN AND SAINT BARTHELEMY
* ST. MAARTEN...SABA...AND ST. EUSTATIUS
* BRITISH VIRGIN ISLANDS
* U.S. VIRGIN ISLANDS
* PUERTO RICAN ISLANDS OF CULEBRA AND VIEQUES
A HURRICANE WATCH IS IN EFFECT FOR...
* PUERTO RICO
A TROPICAL STORM WARNING IS IN EFFECT FOR...
* ANTIGUA...BARBUDA...MONTSERRAT...ST. KITTS...AND NEVIS
* PUERTO RICO
A TROPICAL STORM WATCH IS IN EFFECT FOR...
* TURKS AND CAICOS ISLANDS
HURRICANE CONDITIONS ARE EXPECTED WITHIN THE HURRICANE WARNING
AREA...IN THIS CASE WITHIN THE NEXT 12 HOURS. PREPARATIONS
TO PROTECT LIFE AND PROPERTY SHOULD HAVE ALREADY BEEN COMPLETED.
HURRICANE CONDITIONS ARE POSSIBLE WITHIN THE WATCH AREA...IN THIS
CASE WITHIN THE NEXT 12 HOURS OR SO.
A TROPICAL STORM WATCH MEANS THAT TROPICAL STORM CONDITIONS ARE
POSSIBLE WITHIN THE WATCH AREA...GENERALLY WITHIN 48 HOURS.
FOR STORM INFORMATION SPECIFIC TO PUERTO RICO AND THE U.S. VIRGIN
ISLANDS...INCLUDING POSSIBLE INLAND WATCHES AND WARNINGS...PLEASE
MONITOR PRODUCTS ISSUED BY THE SAN JUAN NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE
FORECAST OFFICE. FOR STORM INFORMATION SPECIFIC TO YOUR AREA OUTSIDE
THE UNITED STATES...PLEASE MONITOR PRODUCTS ISSUED BY YOUR NATIONAL
DISCUSSION AND 48-HOUR OUTLOOK
AT 1100 AM AST...1500 UTC...THE CENTER OF HURRICANE EARL WAS LOCATED
NEAR LATITUDE 18.7 NORTH...LONGITUDE 63.6 WEST. EARL IS MOVING
TOWARD THE WEST-NORTHWEST NEAR 15 MPH...24 KM/HR. THIS GENERAL
MOTION IS EXPECTED TODAY AND TONIGHT...FOLLOWED BY A TURN
TOWARD THE NORTHWEST ON TUESDAY. ON THE FORECAST TRACK...THE CENTER
OF EARL WILL PASS NEAR OR OVER THE NORTHERNMOST VIRGIN ISLANDS THIS
AFTERNOON AND THIS EVENING.
MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS HAVE INCREASED TO NEAR 120 MPH...195
KM/HR...WITH HIGHER GUSTS. EARL IS A CATEGORY THREE HURRICANE ON
THE SAFFIR-SIMPSON HURRICANE WIND SCALE. ADDITIONAL STRENGTHENING
IS FORECAST DURING THE NEXT 48 HOURS.
HURRICANE FORCE WINDS EXTEND OUTWARD UP TO 60 MILES...95 KM...FROM
THE CENTER...AND TROPICAL STORM FORCE WINDS EXTEND OUTWARD UP TO 185
MILES...295 KM. ST. MAARTEN REPORTED A WIND GUST TO 68 MPH...109
KM/HR WITHIN THE PAST FEW HOURS.
ESTIMATED MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE IS 960 MB...28.35 INCHES.
HAZARDS AFFECTING LAND
WIND...HURRICANE CONDITIONS WILL BE SPREADING ACROSS THE NORTHERN
VIRGIN ISLANDS DURING THE NEXT FEW HOURS. TROPICAL STORM CONDITIONS
WILL SPREAD OVER PORTIONS OF PUERTO RICO THIS AFTERNOON...WITH
HURRICANE CONDITIONS POSSIBLE THIS EVENING AND TONIGHT. STRONGER
WINDS...ESPECIALLY IN GUSTS...ARE LIKELY OVER ELEVATED TERRAIN IN
STORM SURGE...STORM SURGE WILL RAISE WATER LEVELS BY AS MUCH AS 3 TO
5 FEET ABOVE GROUND LEVEL PRIMARILY NEAR THE COAST IN AREAS OF
ONSHORE WIND WITHIN THE HURRICANE WARNING AREA...AND 1 TO 3 FEET IN
THE TROPICAL STORM WARNING AREA. THE SURGE WILL BE ACCOMPANIED BY
LARGE AND DANGEROUS BATTERING WAVES.
RAINFALL...EARL IS EXPECTED TO PRODUCE TOTAL RAINFALL ACCUMULATIONS
OF 4 TO 8 INCHES OVER THE LEEWARD ISLANDS...THE VIRGIN ISLANDS AND
PUERTO RICO...WITH POSSIBLE ISOLATED MAXIMUM AMOUNTS OF 12 INCHES...
ESPECIALLY OVER HIGHER ELEVATIONS. THESE RAINS COULD CAUSE
LIFE-THREATENING FLASH FLOODS AND MUDSLIDES.
Meanwhile, a disturbance in the tropical Atlantic could intensify into a tropical depression and eventually into Tropical Storm and Hurricane Fiona.
Here are the model track projections on Invest 97.
Hurricane Earl, a category 2 hurricane is forecast to pick up intensity in the next few days as it heads towardthe east coast. Earl could become a major hurricane within the next 2 days. Earl is forecasted to move a little bit further west than previous tracks, creating a threat to the east coast. A picture of the track is below.
As August draws to a close...it will take with it the pronounced flow of moist air off the Gulf...that gave us a mostly cloudy and somewhat rainy weekend. Doppler radar 24-hour rainfall estimates across central and southern Alabama range between one and two inches. We were fortunate to have the precipitation occur over broad areas---not like recent spotty thunderstorms---and at a light-to-moderate rate that allowed the rain to percolate down to the water table and not just run off into creeks and streams.
With an upper-level ridge ready to slip in from the northeast...get set for plenty of sunshine during the week ahead...and that in turn will help boost our afternoon temperatures into the 90s again. Morning lows will be close to 70 each day.
It has been a cloudy, wet and relatively cool day across the valley. Waves of rain have pushed across much of the valley today providing us with a very soggy Sunday. With the clouds and rain around, it has been the coolest day in months with a high in Huntsville only at 80! Look for lows in the low 70s overnight with the widespread rain tapering off after midnight. Widely scattered showers will be possible on Monday with highs in the middle to upper 80s. The rain will not be nearly as widespread on Monday as it was today. High pressure will bring in more hot and dry weather Tuesday through Thursday with highs in the 90s and lows in the 70s. Another front will bring a few showers and storms Friday. Dry weather is expected by Saturday and Sunday with highs in the low 90s and lows in the 60s. Hurricane Danielle has weakened to a category one and will not be affecting the US coast. It should lose tropical characteristics in about two days. Earl has strengthened into a hurricane with 85 mph winds and will come close to the Carolina coast by Thursday. Get the latest on the tropics and a look at WAFF Live Doppler 48 radar online at www.waff.com.
Have a great night!
WAFF 48 Storm Team
We Track Storms