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Sunday, February 9, 2014

Huge Forecast Bust Ahead

First, let me say I would not encourage anyone to act based on what I tell you.  You should follow recommendations and messages from the National Weather Service, they are the brightest and best trained right?
I read the forecast discussions and model data that all meteorologist are anxiously watch in, and I'm not seeing what they, including the NWS, are seeing.  This possible pending winter storm looks like nothing more than a cold rain event for central and even most northern parts of Alabama.  I say this because temperatures look to warm.  I don't think the models have accounted for warm air surging north with the moisture plume from the Gulf of Mexico.

I'm very concerned that the forecasting blunder of January 28th has created an environment where we feel we must warn at any chance and warn early while creating a mass hysteria for the general public.
In this instance, the NWS issued a Winter Storm Watch almost 60 hours prior to the upcoming event. While this seems like a great proactive move to help guide the public for preparedness, the reality is we can't predict winter weather events in Alabama 12 hours in advance, much less 60.

Unfortunately, most schools and public officials will begin school and administrative closings by midday Monday based on a forecast that quite honestly looks questionable at best.

Could it snow on Tuesday?  Of course, my money is on a cold rain event Monday night and Tuesday for Alabama.  At this point I do think we have a good chance of the rain changing to snow as colder air gets pulled into a deepening surface low as it tracks up the Atlantic coast on Wednesday.  But that should be short lived and only provide interesting water cooler comments.  The bigger discussion will be on why can't we get the forecast right.....

It's easy for me to sit back and question what the experts say, but at least I'm doing it prior to the event and not after.

This is an upcoming forecast bust, and a reason to issue a Weather Droppings POOH forecast.
Good luck out there and stay warm as it has been a cold winter.

Monday, June 10, 2013

The Alabama Climate Report

Brought to you by the Office of the Alabama

Volume 3, Number 8, May 2013

How cold was this past spring (March-May)?
I have a new way to tell. I’m a modest runner (modest in terms of skill, not attitude) and when the weather gets warm and humid I reduce the length of my runs and replace the lost miles by swimming laps at the neighborhood pool.
I usually start this switch by the beginning of May. This year I didn’t dip my toe in for the first time until June 1 — and the water was still cold! I conclude, therefore, that it was a cold spring.
Lest you think the state climatologist relies on anecdotes instead of statistics, the numbers confirm my impressions. Our statewide sampling of weather stations shows that the mean temperature for May 2013 (68.1 F) was more than two degrees cooler than a normal May (70.5).
Two degrees might not sound like much, until you look at some of the specifics. On May 4, Dauphin Island had its coolest May temperature (50.0 F) in the 37 years that station has been reporting.
Ten stations saw record-setting lowest maximum May temperatures. Two of those, Scottsboro and Talladega, have climate records going back 114 years. On May 5, Scottsboro's high temperature for the day was only 48.9° F. That broke the previous record of 50° F set on May 20, 1894! The Sand Mountain Sub Station also set a May record that day with a high temperature that was only 46° F. Those low temps mean that for a large portion of north Alabama the high temperatures that day didn't reach 50.
Yes, it was cool in May. It was also very cool in March: According to the Southeastern Regional Climate Center, March 2013 was the seventh coolest March since 1895, with a mean temperature that was more than 5.5° F cooler than normal.
April was slightly (1.7° F) warmer than normal, so it will be interesting to see where the spring of 2013 ends up in the record book once May's cool temperatures are added to the tally.
I’ve been in touch with organizations which forecast general hurricane activity for the Atlantic basin, which includes the Gulf of Mexico. Every group I’ve checked is forecasting “above” normal to “much above” normal activity for the 2013 hurricane season, which began June 1.
This is especially interesting because the U.S. is experiencing its longest drought in major hurricanes to strike our coasts since recordkeeping began in 1850. As of today, we have gone 2,782 days (7+ years since Wilma on Oct 24, 2005) without a major strike.
I don’t believe that’s a trend. I think it is a warning: Mother Nature eventually balances out the statistics, so we are due. Certain patterns in ocean temperatures and atmospheric winds now present are associated with higher incidences of Atlantic hurricanes.
The average number of named storms (hurricanes and tropical storms) is 12 per year, with forecasts for 2013 ranging from 13 to 18. Here are a couple of quotes from forecasters: “We anticipate an above-average Atlantic basin hurricane season due to the combination of an anomalously warm tropical Atlantic and a relatively low likelihood of El NiƱo,” Klotzbach and Gray. “A wild season is on the way, and the ‘major hit drought’ on the U.S. coast should end,” Joe Bastardi.
I don’t know where or when such storms may hit, and I hope Alabama is spared but keep tuned to the coming season. It could be noteworthy. Watch for these names as the year unfolds: Andrea (already a tropical storm in the Gulf of Mexico), Barry, Chantal, Dorian, Erin, Fernand, Gabrielle, Humberto, Ingrid, Jerry, Karen, Lorenzo, Melissa, Nestor, Olga, Pablo, Rebekah, Sebastien, Tanya, Van, and Wendy.
- John Christy

Friday, April 15, 2011

Tornado Warning


Thursday, April 14, 2011

Moderate Risk of Severe Weather Friday

The Storm Prediction Center has placed most of Central Alabama under a Moderate Risk of Severe Weather for Friday. Convective Outlook update placed most of central and western Alabama as well as eastern Mississippi in a *MODERATE* Risk of severe weather tomorrow. The most eye-catching statement in their discussion is this statement:


Monday, March 7, 2011

What imbeciles are writing these temperature forecast?

Folks, it is not going to get to 60F today. Forecast from the NWS and local meteorologist have forecasted highs today in the upper 50's and up to 60F. At 10am CST the current temperatures in Central Alabama are in the low 40's. Cloud cover will remain in place throughout the day. It's not going to get that warm.

What idiots are publishing these temperature forecast? I would say that its time to get your head out of the computer models and look around you.

Yesterday we had a forecast high in the mid 50's. The high at my location was 41F.

Today's temperature forecast seems way off. I would keep your jacket with you today.

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