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Cool, Soaking Rain Begins Tomorrow

| December 2, 2016 @ 3:27 pm

VERY BENEFICIAL RAIN AHEAD: Clouds increase across Alabama tonight, and rain will move in from the west during the day. Rain should reach the I-65 corridor by midday, and on into East Alabama by mid-afternoon. Then, a soaking, chilly rain will fall tomorrow night and Sunday. The high tomorrow will be only in the 50-55 degree range, and many communities north of Birmingham won’t get out of the 40s Sunday with the steady rain continuing to fall.

STRONG STORMS EARLY NEXT WEEK: On Monday a surface low over Louisiana will move northeast, to a position near Nashville by Tuesday morning. A warm front will be moving northward, and there is a chance the “warm sector” moves as far north as I-20 by Monday night, and this could set the stage for strong to severe thunderstorms over the southern two-thirds of Alabama. For now SPC has the severe weather threat confined to the far southwest corner of the state, but that will probably be pulled northward at some point. We will keep a close eye on forecast severe weather parameters over the weekend and we can be more specific about the threat, if one develops.

Rain and storms will end Tuesday morning as a slot of dry air rotates into the state.

Model guidance suggests 4-5 inches of rain is very possible, if not likely between tomorrow and Tuesday. This will take a big chunk out of rain deficiencies statewide; Birmingham still needs 11.51″ to get back to average values and end the drought.

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ARCTIC BLAST LATER NEXT WEEK: An Arctic front will blow in here Wednesday, and most likely it will come through in dry fashion. Then, the coldest air so far this season will settle in here Thursday, when the high will be only in the low 40s with a biting north wind of 15-30 mph. Then, on Friday, some places up in the Tennessee Valley of far North Alabama will stay below freezing all day, with highs in the mid to upper 30s for Birmingham, Tuscaloosa, Anniston, and Gadsden. Early morning lows should reach the teens in the December 9-10 time frame.

NO BURN BAN REMAINS IN EFFECT: We received this news release from the Alabama Forestry Commission this afternoon…

“The statewide Drought Emergency ‘No Burn’ Order declared by Governor Robert Bentley in early November will remain in effect until conditions change sufficiently to reduce the occurrence and frequency of wildfires. Despite a nice coverage of rain across much of the state this week, the Governor and officials with the Alabama Forestry Commission (AFC) remain cautious.

“We are grateful for the rainfall we’ve received, but because of the severe prolonged drought it is just too soon to lift the ‘No Burn’ Order,” explained Interim State Forester Gary Cole. “The winds and lower relative humidity accompanying the cooler temperatures we’re experiencing combine to quickly dry out vegetation, which will increase the probability of dangerous wildfire activity until the next rain event. We’re certainly hoping the weather forecast of additional rain through early next week is correct, and we will re-assess the situation at that time.”

“After seeing the recent devastation in our sister state of Tennessee, we cannot afford to take any risks,” Governor Robert Bentley said. “The bottom line is that Alabama is still in an extreme drought. Until the threat of catastrophic wildfires is considerably reduced, we do not want to be too hasty in making a decision. Several recent wildfires across our state have threatened residential areas, and if not for the efforts of the Alabama Forestry Commission firefighters and volunteer fire departments, we would have lost homes. Their commitment to protecting life, property and wildlife is greatly appreciated.”

Year-to-date, a total of 3,644 wildfires have consumed almost 50,000 acres of land in Alabama, with 2,219 of those fires and 29,406 acres just since October 1. “This past Monday 108 active wildfires burned over 3,000 acres across the state, setting a record for one day. This situation was extremely alarming not only because of the unusually high number of fires but also because of their large size,” continued Cole. “It was a nightmarish day and night, stretching the men and women who make up our wildfire suppression resources beyond capacity.”

WEATHER BRAINS: Don’t forget you can listen to our weekly 90 minute netcast anytime on the web, or on iTunes. This is the show all about weather featuring many familiar voices, including our meteorologists here at ABC 33/40.

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I enjoyed seeing all the third graders today at Oak Grove Elementary School… be looking for them on the Pepsi KIDCAM today at 5:00 on ABC 33/40 News! My next Weather Xtreme video will be posted here Monday morning by 7:00… Brian Peters will have the video updates tomorrow and Sunday. Enjoy the weekend!

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More Good News Stories from Our Alabama NewsCenter Partners!

| December 2, 2016 @ 11:31 am

From the festive events to football championships, from community outreach to scientific advances, and from building businesses to building relationships, our friends at Alabama NewsCenter bring us good news stories from across Alabama. Here are a few of our favorites!

There is something for everyone this holiday season in Can’t Miss Alabama

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Crimson Tide and Gators face off for SEC title while Alabama high schools vie for championships

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Topgolf Birmingham tees up the the next round of growth around the BJCC

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Mobile focuses on tech sector with innovative initiatives

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Longtime Auburn barber retires after 56 years

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Business is popping for Alabama Makers Kettle Bros

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Atlanta’s Georgia Dome is the Crimson Tide’s ‘dome’ away from home

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Selma to Montgomery trail leads to Alabama, national history

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Do college football refs have it in for your team?

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Birmingham’s Boutwell Auditorium hosts 77th annual Christmas concert

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Take Action: Stay on your feet and off the stretcher with Dr. Josh’s fall prevention tips

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Wenonah, Ramsay reach Alabama football championships055-wenonah-ramsey-dragons-7

Birmingham Salvation Army serves last Thanksgiving meal at downtown location

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UAB, Jefferson County offer free eye exams, glasses to low-income patients

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Birmingham’s Southern Research conducting high throughput Zika screening for NIH

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UAB study finds yoga is relatively safe, but know your limits

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Birmingham’s Southern Research has been targeting AIDS for 30 years

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Sun To The Max At Midday Across Central Alabama, But Rain Is On Its Way

| December 2, 2016 @ 10:59 am

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SUNNY AND COOL AT MIDDAY, BUT RAIN IS ON ITS WAY
Maximum sunshine and cool temperatures is the story across Central Alabama at the 11 o’clock hour, but the main focus will be on the beneficial rain that we’ll receive during the next few days starting tomorrow. Temperatures across the area at this time are mainly in the 50s, with Troy being the warm spot at 59 degrees, and Pell City as the cool spot at 52 degrees.

BIRMINGHAM’S CLIMATOLOGY AND RECORDS
The normal high for December 2nd is 59, while the normal low is 38. The record high for today was set back in 1991 at 76. The record low was set back in 1960 at 20.

FOR THE REST OF TODAY
A sun filled sky and cool temperatures will be the story for the remainder of the afternoon hours. Afternoon highs will top out in the low to mid 60s across the area, which is actually just a couple of degrees above normal for this time of year. Cloud cover will start to move in during the late evening and increase during the overnight hours. Lows will stay above freezing for the most part due to the increase in cloud cover, with mid to upper 30s expected. A few of the colder spots may dip below 32 for an hour or two.

Latest GFS Run: Total Rainfall Up To Midnight Tomorrow Night

Latest GFS Run: Total Rainfall Up To Midnight Tomorrow Night

SATURDAY’S FORECAST
The morning will start of with mostly cloudy skies across Central Alabama, and rain may start to fall in the western counties of the area during the late morning hours. As the day progresses, rain chances will increase from the west to the east, and rain will be likely for everyone in the area by the late evening hours. Afternoon highs will mainly be in the 50s, with a few locations in the southeastern parts of the area touching the low 60s. Rain totals will vary throughout the area, with heavier amounts to the west, and lighter amounts to the east. Latest model guidance has Birmingham receiving around 1/4 inch of rain by midnight.

HEADED TO THE BEACH
Sunny skies and windy today across the beaches of Fort Morgan all the way over to Panama City Beach, with highs in the 60s. Rain and thunderstorms likely through Monday, with gusty winds and highs in the 60s and 70s. Mostly sunny skies with a few scattered showers through Thursday, with highs near 70 for Tuesday and Wednesday, and dropping into the 50s on Thursday. See a very detailed Gulf Coast forecast here.

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THE TROPICS
Good news, the tropics are all quiet at this time, and development is not expected for the next 5 days. This will be the last update on the tropics until late Spring of 2017, unless something develops. The Atlantic Basin Hurricane Season runs from June 1st to November 30th.

NUMBER OF THE DAY: 90
The warmest high temperature across the nation was recorded in Stuart Florida when the mercury soars to an unseasonably warm temperature of 90 degrees.

ON THIS DAY IN 1925
A late season hurricane caused extensive damage across the Florida peninsula, then moved off the Georgia coast crossing Cape Hatteras as a tropical storm. The storm produced whole gales along the Middle Atlantic and Southern New England coast. Winds gusted to 60 mph at Block Island RI, and reached 64 mph at Atlantic City NJ.

FOLLOW THE BLOG ON TWITTER
Be sure to follow the Alabama Wx Weather Blog on Twitter. Just click here to start following our feed.

WEATHERBRAINS
This is the weekly netcast that’s all about weather featuring many familiar voices, including our meteorologists at ABC 33/40. This week, the “Brains” chatted with Mike Wolfinbarger, from RadarScope. You can listen anytime on the web, or on iTunes. You can find it here.

Forecaster: Scott Martin (Twitter: @scottmartinwx)

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Another Big Rain Event Begins Tomorrow

| December 2, 2016 @ 6:35 am

COLD MORNING: Temperatures are below freezing in most places across North/Central Alabama early this morning; we expect another sunny day ahead with a high in the low 60s this afternoon. We stay above freezing tonight as clouds return.

WET, VERY COOL WEEKEND: Models continue to trend faster with the next weather system, and we will need to bring in a chance of rain tomorrow, maybe even starting tomorrow morning over the western counties of the state. The rain will slowly spread eastward during the day, otherwise tomorrow will be cloudy and cool with a high in the 50s.

Widespread rain is likely tomorrow night and Sunday; a warm front will remain over far South Alabama, so we stay in cool air. In fact, many communities north of Birmingham won’t get out of the 40s Sunday with rain falling.

STRONG STORMS EARLY NEXT WEEK? The warm front over South Alabama will lift northward during the day Monday, and there is a chance North Alabama could be in the “warm sector” of the storm by Monday night as a surface low develops and passes just northwest of here. The latest GFS run in house (06Z) shows dew points into the mid 60s as far north as I-20, so we will have potential for strong, maybe severe storms late Monday, Monday night, and very early Tuesday morning.

Rain and storms will end by mid-morning Tuesday as we get into a dry slot; some clearing is possible Tuesday afternoon with a high in the 60s.

Rain totals from tomorrow through Tuesday morning are expected to be in the 3-4 inch range for much of Alabama; some spots could see even more. And, some flooding issues could crop up by Monday night. No, this won’t end the drought, but it will sure continue to put a dent in it. About a third of the state remains in an “exceptional” drought…

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ARCTIC AIR BLAST LATE NEXT WEEK: The “gates to the Yukon” will open up next week, and very cold, Arctic air will flood much of the continental U.S. by Thursday and Friday. Looks like the Arctic front will come through, most likely, in dry fashion Wednesday, and we will go into the deep freeze after its passage.

We won’t get past the low 40s Thursday, and a strong north wind will make it feel much colder. Then, on Friday, the high will only in the upper 30s, and by Saturday morning most places around here have a good chance of dropping into the teens. Birmingham’s record low for December 10 is 13 set in 1995… I don’t think it gets that cold, but we should be within 5 degrees or so.

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See the Weather Xtreme video for maps, graphics, and more details.

STORM SURVEYS: NWS Birmingham has identified 11 tornadoes so far from the severe weather event Tuesday night and Wednesday… NWS Huntsville survey teams have reported 6 tornadoes, for a total so far statewide of 17. That number could still go higher.

WEATHER BRAINS: Don’t forget you can listen to our weekly 90 minute netcast anytime on the web, or on iTunes. This is the show all about weather featuring many familiar voices, including our meteorologists here at ABC 33/40.

CONNECT: You can find me on all of the major social networks…

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I will be doing a weather program this morning at Oak Grove Elementary in Jefferson County… look for the next Weather Xtreme video here by 4:00 this afternoon. Enjoy the day!

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More Wet Weather By Saturday Night

| December 1, 2016 @ 2:58 pm

BLUE SKY: As advertised, this is a cool, dry day across the great state of Alabama with ample sunshine and temperatures generally in the mid to upper 50s this afternoon. The average high for December 1 (for Birmingham) is 60.

Tonight will be clear and cold; most communities will see a low near the freezing mark early tomorrow, with 20s for the colder spots. And, tomorrow will stay mostly sunny with a high in the low 60s.

RAIN RETURNS OVER THE WEEKEND: Clouds return to Alabama Saturday ahead of the next weather system to the west in this active pattern, and some rain could creep into West Alabama by afternoon. Then, expect periods of rain Saturday night and Sunday. A warm front will be to the south, so it will be a chilly rain with many North Alabama communities holding in the 40s Sunday.

NEXT WEEK: A deepening surface low will move from near Lake Charles to Memphis Monday and Monday night, and the warm front lifts northward, putting much of Alabama in the warm sector. Showers are likely during the day Monday, and then we will have the chance of strong thunderstorms late in the day, Monday night, and into early Tuesday morning. Pretty hard to be specific this far in advance, but for now it looks like severe storms could be an issue again for the state Monday night. We will keep a close eye on severe weather parameters as the event gets closer.

Rain and storms will end Tuesday morning as we get into a dry slot. On the positive side, rain amounts from Saturday night to Tuesday morning will be in the 2 to 4 inch range again for most of the state, very beneficial.

COLDEST AIR SO FAR: An Arctic front will move through Wednesday with a chance of some light rain, and then we will see a shot of very cold air dropping southward from the Yukon. I would expect by Thursday and Friday we will have a hard time getting out of the 30s, and lows could reach the upper teens by Friday or Saturday morning (December 9-10).

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HURRICANE SEASON IS OVER: The 2016 Atlantic basin hurricane season ended yesterday. Tthis was the first above-normal season since 2012. The Atlantic saw 15 named storms during 2016, including 7 hurricanes (Alex, Earl, Gaston, Hermine, Matthew, Nicole, and Otto), 3 of which were major hurricanes (Gaston, Matthew and Nicole). NOAA’s updated hurricane season outlook in August called for 12 to 17 named storms, including 5 to 8 hurricanes, with 2 to 4 of those predicted to become major hurricanes.

Five named storms made landfall in the United States during 2016, the most since 2008 when six storms struck. Tropical Storm Bonnie and Hurricane Matthew struck South Carolina. Tropical Storms Colin and Julia, as well as Hurricane Hermine, made landfall in Florida. Hermine was the first hurricane to make landfall in Florida since Wilma in 2005.

Several Atlantic storms made landfall outside of the United States during 2016: Tropical Storm Danielle in Mexico, Hurricane Earl in Belize, Hurricane Matthew in Haiti, Cuba, and the Bahamas, and Hurricane Otto in Nicaragua.

WEATHER BRAINS: Don’t forget you can listen to our weekly 90 minute netcast anytime on the web, or on iTunes. This is the show all about weather featuring many familiar voices, including our meteorologists here at ABC 33/40.

CONNECT: You can find me on all of the major social networks…

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I had a great time today visiting with kindergarten students at Striplin Elementary in Gadsden, and with 4th graders at Kitty Stone Elementary in Jacksonville… be looking for them on the Pepsi KIDCAM today at 4:00 and 5:00 on ABC 33/40 News! The next Weather Xtreme video will be posted here by 7:00 a.m. tomorrow…

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May Need A Windbreaker For This Beautiful Midday Weather

| December 1, 2016 @ 12:42 pm

vis

A BEAUTIFUL & COOL MIDDAY ACROSS CENTRAL ALABAMA
Welcome to the first day of Meteorological Winter. Yes in the meteorology world, December 1st is the first day of Winter. For everyone else who goes my the calendar, the Winter Solstice takes place at 4:44 AM CST on December 21st.

Across Central Alabama at the noon hour, skies are absolutely clear. Not only for the area, but for nearly the entire southeast. A few clouds left over from the system that moved through yesterday are hiding the sun down on the eastern panhandle of Florida.

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Temperatures across Central Alabama are rather cool at the noon hour as well, with just about everyone in the 50s. The warm spot in the area is Montgomery at 61 degrees, with the cool spot being Cullman at 52 degrees.

BIRMINGHAM’S CLIMATOLOGY AND RECORDS
The normal high for December 1st is 60, while the normal low is 38. The record high for today was set back in 1991 at 75. The record low was set back in 1965 at 17.

FOR THE REST OF TODAY
Skies will continue to be absolutely clear throughout the remainder of the day and evening time, with afternoon highs reaching the mid to upper 50s north of I-20 & I-20/59, and upper 50s to low 60s south of that. Winds will be out of the north averaging between 5-10 MPH. For those who will be attending Christmas parades later this evening, like the great one that is put on by the city of Gardendale, temperatures will be in the mid to upper 40s at 6PM and dropping into the low to mid 40s by 9PM. Overnight lows will mainly be in the 30s, with a few of the colder spots dropping down into the 20s.

FRIDAY’S FORECAST
Another beautiful and cool day across Central Alabama for the first Friday of the month. The sun will be out in full force and afternoon highs are expected to be in the low 60s across much of the area with a few locations making it into the mid 60s. Clouds will start to move into the western counties of the area close to midnight tomorrow night and skies will become partly to mostly cloudy by the time you wake up early on Saturday morning. Overnight lows will be in the 30s and 40s.

NUMBER OF THE DAY: 11.35
Even though the storm totals from yesterday’s storms were impressive, at 2.07 inches, we are still deficient in our rain for the year by 11.35 inches (measured at the Birmingham airport).

ON THIS DAY IN 2011
Wind speeds as high as 102 MPH were measured in Centerville, Utah and surrounding cities. Damage was reported throughout Weber and Davis counties ranging from South Ogden down to Bountiful. More than 400 trees were down at the Davis Golf course alone due to the winds. Up to 54,000 residences were without power throughout the day and into the evening. Train service between Layton and Salt Lake City was suspended due to damaged train stations, debris on the train tracks, and power outages. Cleanup costs totaled $8 million in Centerville alone. No injuries were reported from the wind, but a number of injuries were reported from those helping with the cleanup effort.

FOLLOW THE BLOG ON TWITTER
Be sure to follow the Alabama Wx Weather Blog on Twitter. Just click here to start following our feed.

WEATHERBRAINS
This is the weekly netcast that’s all about weather featuring many familiar voices, including our meteorologists at ABC 33/40. This week, the “Brains” chatted with Mike Wolfinbarger, from RadarScope. You can listen anytime on the web, or on iTunes. You can find it here.

Forecaster: Scott Martin (Twitter: @scottmartinwx)

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