Tuesday, January 29, 2013

11:30am Weather Update

All eyes are focused on tonight’s severe weather potential.  I’m going to try to keep this direct and to the point with information you can use and not get too much in the weeds of meteorology for tonight’s setup.

First, the Storm Prediction Center has upgraded southeast Missouri, southern Illinois, western Kentucky and western Tennessee to a “Moderate Risk” in their latest severe weather outlook.  Also, eastern/central Missouri, central Illinois and much of Indiana are included in a “Slight Risk”.

The above outlook is valid through 6am CT Wednesday.

The main threat from tonight’s storms will be damaging wind.  Winds 5,000 feet above the surface will be roaring at 70-90 mph.  Any thunderstorm that gets going will easily interact with that wind and could bring it down to the surface.

Here is the latest outlook for damaging thunderstorm winds.

Note the hatched area.  That indicates a 10% or greater probability of wind gusts 74 mph or greater within 25 miles of any point within the area.

I know many of you will not like to hear the next threat but yes, having a couple tornadoes is a real possibility.  Here is the latest outlook concerning the probability of a tornado occurring within 25 miles of a point.

Again, note the hatched area.  That indicates a 10% or greater probability of strong tornadoes (EF2 – EF5) within 25 miles of any point within the area.

Hail is also a threat but I believe it is much lower compared to the other two modes of severe weather.

TIMING

Here are a couple of images from the 12z run of the high-resolution 4km RPM computer model.  Again, these are not radar images, they are what the computer model projects the radar will look like.

7pm CT Tuesday:

12:30am CT Wednesday:

4am CT Wednesday:

Yesterday on Twitter I mentioned the area I "liked" for storms tonight.  I've made a slight adjustment but it isn't much.  The area I like for storms tonight is a corridor that runs from Chester, Illinois to Malden, Missouri to Star City, Arkansas.
 
FREAK-OUT-METER
  • Southeast Missouri: 5/6
  • Missouri Bootheel: 6
  • Southern Illinois: 5/6
  • Western Kentucky: 5
  • Eastern Arkansas:6/7
  • Western Tennessee: 6
  • St. Louis metro: 4
  • Central Indiana: 4
  • Southern Indiana: 4/5
BOTTOM LINE
  • I expect tornado watches to be issued late today and overnight.
  • Warnings are likely anytime from late this afternoon through early AM Wednesday.
  • It is IMPERATIVE that you have a way to be alerted to severe weather this evening/overnight.
  • Take a couple of minutes and think about what you need to do and where you need to go if a tornado warning is issued this evening or overnight.  After the kids get home from school, discuss it with them, but make sure not to scare them.
  • If you don't know what county you live in, take 30 seconds and find out.
I am going to publish another post later this afternoon concerning severe weather at night.

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