Sunday, February 26, 2012

Update on potential severe weather early this week

As we first posted yesterday, MWN is closely monitoring the weather for Tuesday night as thunderstorms, including a threat for severe weather, may develop near or over the Mid-South region. Since yesterday’s initial post, the timing of this system has changed a bit on the computer models, and that has made some impact on the threat for the metro area.

NWS forecast for Wednesday AM, with advertised cold front now likely to pass through around mid-morning.
It now appears that the low pressure area and associated cold front will be moving through a bit later than first projected, and this means that rain and thunderstorms may move into the metro area later Tuesday night, especially overnight, and could now linger into the first part of Wednesday. With the likelihood of thunderstorms being pushed back potentially several hours in the metro, the greatest threat of severe weather on Tuesday is now likely to be focused further west. For this reason, the Storm Prediction Center has moved its “Slight Risk” area mostly out of the metro area, though we do sit just outside its eastern fringe. (There will be scattered showers and perhaps some thunder during the day Tuesday as a warm front lifts north through the region, but at this time the threat for severe weather during that time period is very low.)

The Storm Prediction Center's "Slight Risk" area has shifted west with this morning's update.
Despite the focus shifting west, the threat for severe weather in the metro has not been completely eliminated. With thunderstorms still likely to impact the area overnight Tuesday into Wednesday morning, and sufficient wind dynamics in place, some storms may remain strong as they move through the area with wind gusts the most likely hazard. The largest limiting factor to more widespread severe weather locally, partly due to the system’s later timing, will be instability.

With this event still more than 48 hours out, further adjustments are possible. If more sufficient instability levels appear in later models, or if the timing continues to change, our threat of severe weather may increase again. MWN is continuing to closely monitor this situation and will keep you updated via the methods at the bottom of the post.

As also indicated yesterday, now is a great time to make sure you are prepared for severe weather this spring.  Review the blog posts from earlier this week on various severe weather types and what to do in case severe weather strikes. We also HIGHLY encourage you to have multiple methods of receiving notification of severe weather threats, especially overnight. NOAA Weather Radio is one; outdoor warning sirens may NOT wake you up and are not intended to. The other is StormWatch+ - now available in the smartphone apps for Android and iPhone. This mobile alerting technology will send you an audio alert (that will wake you up if your phone is not silenced and it's close by) and push notification if your location is under a watch or warning. It's personalized weather alerting in the palm of your hand! Learn more and download the app at

--Kevin Terry, MemphisWeather.Net

For weather information for Memphis and the Mid-South, where and when you need it, visit on the web, on your mobile phone, download our iPhone or Android apps, or visit us on Facebook or Twitter.

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