The latest computer guidance coming in this morning is still suggesting a few hours of snow coming through on Thursday. It still appears this will be a low impact event. Temperatures remain above freezing through the day so any snow should melt on the roads...any accumulations would be on the grass, trees, rooftops, etc.
Upper Level Low...Weatherman's Woe!
That's what we're tracking for tomorrow. Strong low pressure in the upper atmosphere will move across central and northern Alabama during the day tomorrow. These sort of weather systems can be quite fickle and have been the cause of many a busted forecast for us weather guys! The strength of the low and the path it takes determines who gets snow and how much falls. If the path of the low is farther south, the snow might miss us entirely...if it is too far to the north, the heaviest snow would end up in Tennessee.
Here's the latest thinking with WAFF 48 Pinpoint Predictor:
Rain mixes with or changes to snow around mid-morning.
We could be looking at all snow in many areas by early afternoon.
The threat for snow ends by late afternoon.
Here's the snow forecast map according to WAFF 48 Pinpoint Predictor:
So, in summary here's what we expect:
---Snow remains a good possibility for areas of central and northern Alabama tomorrow.
---The precipitation will likely begin as rain in the morning. By 10-11am the atmosphere cools sufficiently for rain to mix with or change over to snow. In any given area, the window for snow will only last about 2-3 hours. The threat for our area looks to end by 5pm.
---Travel problems while the snow falls are not expected. The ground remains very wet and relatively warm and with temperatures staying above freezing through the day roads will stay just wet. Black ice could be a problem later Thursday night as any moisture remaining on the roads freezes as temperatures drop into the 20s by Friday morning.
---Accumulations will stay confined to the grass. Right now, accumulation appears least likely for the Shoals and NW Alabama, and most likely across NE Alabama, particularly in the higher terrain areas....1-2" at most with perhaps some isolated 3" amounts.
All snow events in the south are tough to forecast, but this type of set-up is particularly challenging and has in the past brought unexpected heavy snow. The intensity of the upper low and path it takes will determine exactly where and how much snow falls and quite often the precise impact won't be known until the snow event is underway. Bottom line...keep checking back for updates!
WAFF 48 Storm Team