Warming Up – Scattered Showers & Storms
It has been an unusually cool and wet start to the month of July, with already more than six inches of rain since July 1st. It is official, we have not reached the triple digits since July 7th of 2012, when we had a high temperature of 101°. With the tropical air mass in place and all of the moisture evaporating from the trees and soil from the recent rain, it is very muggy outside. The moisture has also aided in more cloud cover, with many seeing more clouds than sun so far today. Temperatures are mostly in the low to mid 80s as of 2:00 pm, with heat index values near 90° in some spots and the mid 90s in northwest Alabama. The warmest is Muscles Shoals at 88°, with Albertville the coolest checking in at 73°, due to the mostly cloudy sky and rain cooled air.
There have been a few passing showers throughout the day. The majority of the rain has been along and east of I-65 and that is likely going to be where the best chance of rain will continue through the rest of today. Below is the latest radar image, with the greatest coverage of rain south of the Tennessee River and east of Birmingham.
The heavy, persistent rain from the 4th and for periods of the weekend is long gone, but the current weather pattern will keep isolated to scattered showers and storms in the forecast through most of the week. Temperatures will slowly rise to near normal values, 91° for Tuesday and Wednesday. Rain chances will increase toward the end of the week, especially Thursday, as a cold front approaches and moves through the area.
Also of note is Tropical Storm Chantal that developed in the central, tropical Atlantic Sunday night. As of the 2:00 pm EDT advisory, Chantal has maximum sustained wind of 45 mph, racing west-northwest at 25 mph . Conditions are favorable over the next couple of days for Chantal to strengthen, but land interaction with the mountainous terrain of Hispaniola and Cuba may shear the storm apart and prevent much strengthening. As of right now it looks like Chantal will steer east of the Gulf of Mexico and more toward the eastern Florida coast. We will keep you posted with any updates!
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