Sunday, June 26, 2011

Thunderstorm forecast for this afternoon and evening

A complicated scenario has set up for the rest of the day with regards to the chance of thunderstorms in the Memphis metro region.  A Severe Thunderstorm Watch is in effect until 8pm tonight, but looking at 3pm radar imagery, one would think that the area would be in the clear for the rest of the day as thunderstorms move away into north Alabama.  This may end up being the case, however a couple of atmospheric conditions exist that could come together to bring a few storms to the region.

The first is a nearly-stalled outflow boundary from the storms to our east that is positioned across Tipton and Fayette counties (see radar image below).  Typically in the summertime, a boundary like this is all it takes to spark new thunderstorm development. In addition, a cluster of thunderstorms in south-central Missouri is moving east-southeast. The storms in southeast Missouri are expected to hold together as they move into northeast Arkansas and northwest Tennessee. These storms could also produce an outflow boundary that could intersect the boundary over the metro area to produce thunderstorms.

Satellite / radar composite as of 3:20pm Sunday
The primary threats with any storms that form will be damaging wind, though large hail and very heavy rain is also possible.  The threat of tornadoes is almost zero.

I expect any complexes of thunderstorms that form Monday to be well to our north as high pressure aloft caps off convection.  A cold front on Tuesday will bring our next chance of rain after this evening.

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