Storm Timing & Intensity

Posted on: 11:36 am, April 3, 2014, by , updated on: 03:19pm, April 3, 2014

One of the biggest challenges in severe weather forecasting is coming up with the timing and intensity of storms a day away. Right now a tornado watch is up for Arkansas and southern Missouri. Today is likely to be very active for the Mississippi Valley as much of that area is under a moderate risk for severe weather. This system is one that heads our way during the day on Friday.




The models are coming together on the timing for Friday. Strong to severe storms are possible in the Shoals early in the day then they press eastward and weaken after that. The main threat continues to be damaging winds. At the line weakens, the tornado threat does as well. There is only a slim chance of quick spin up tornado mainly across northwest Alabama Friday morning. Here is a look at a couple of computer models. Here is the GFS.


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  • 7am Friday Morning

  • 6pm Friday Evening


This model shows heavy storms moving into northwest Alabama around sunrise then moving eastward toward Huntsville by lunch. There is a slight weakening phase to the storm activity moving from west to east. By late in the afternoon, rain and storms are across Sand and Lookout Mountains.


Here is our in-house computer model which seems to be running a little slow compared to others:


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This shows a broken line of storms moving through in the morning across northwest Alabama. The line isn’t as strong as the last run. By the line gets to the east, there isn’t too much left.


Here is a look at the timing. There is a wide time frame here. Again, there is still some uncertainty in the speed and intensity as this time. Be prepared for strong to severe storms in the morning for the Shoals, strong storms around Huntsville during the late morning through the early afternoon and weaken storms to the east later in the day.




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