Friday, August 1, 2014

More Rain This Weekend

By Jay Grymes & Steve Caparotta

WAFB First Alert Quickcast:

- on-and-off rains expected for Saturday & Sunday
- ‘unsettled’ weather extends through the coming work week
- tracking T.S. Bertha

We’ve been talking about a less-than-agreeable weekend weatherwise just about all week long … and our thinking remains the same. Today was a good indicator of the kind of weather we expect for both Saturday and Sunday. Neither day will be an all-day rain at your house, but we are expecting periods of rain across the viewing area for both days. And yes, the ‘muggies’ are back in full-force too.

Earlier today, most WAFB communities experienced two eastbound passing waves of rain. Neither produced any severe weather although both had a few embedded t-storms within them. Here at WAFB, the first wave produced only a trace of rain but the second dumped more than one-half-inch of rain in about one-half-hour.

The upper-level disturbance that we have been tracking from the northwest is now closer than ever and will remain a part of the local weather ingredients through the weekend, providing a little extra lift to our warm and moist atmosphere. At the same time, the coastal front that has been lingering in the region will continue to meander along and over the coastal parishes, also providing lift to the moistening air mass. All this means scattered-to-likely rains over the weekend. Again, not all-day rains, but enough to check the WAFB First Alert app to get a check on radar trends as you head out the door. Some could see more than 2” of additional rain between now and Sunday evening.

Our forecast carries scattered rains through the coming work week as well. We’re expecting fairly typical weather days for August: morning lows in the low 70°s, afternoon highs in the upper 80°s to low 90°s, and scattered mainly-afternoon showers and t-storms.

In the tropics, T.S. Bertha -- which was ‘upgraded’ last night – is cutting right through the heart of the Lesser Antilles and will be impacting portions of the Greater Antilles (Puerto Rico & Hispaniola) over the weekend as it tracks to the northwest. The National Hurricane Center (NHC) does not anticipate much opportunity for Bertha to strengthen over the next few days, although the current NHC intensity forecast shows Bertha approaching hurricane strength on Day-5 (reaching sustained winds of 70 mph). 

More importantly for most of us, the latest track forecast and computer model consensus keeps Bertha over the open waters of the western Atlantic -- clearly no threat to the Gulf and, for now at least, no imminent threat to the U.S. East Coast.

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