Monday, May 5 2014 7:59 AM EDT2014-05-05 11:59:35 GMT
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The FOX6 Storm Warn Team continues to track an area of showers and storms expanding across Texas, Louisiana and Arkansas and shifting eastward.
This is actually round one of two that Alabama will experience through Saturday. Round one is forecast to be weaker than round two.
The stage is certainly being set today and tonight for rain and storms. The air has warmed into the upper 60s and lower 70s and moisture from the Gulf of Mexico is on the increase northward.
TIMING: ROUND ONE
Storms, which are expected to be non-severe, are expected to impact northwest Alabama by 9 p.m. Thursday, especially near Hamilton. By 2 a.m. Friday, the activity lines up along the I-20/59 corridor and will continue moving eastward and impact far eastern Alabama by 4 a.m.
Expect rumbles of thunder, infrequent lightning, locally heavy rainfall, breezy conditions and mild temperatures. The dry air in place now will be replaced with a more moist environment overnight which will lead to milder overnight lows in the upper 50s and lower 60s.
Rain will be ongoing during the Friday morning commute, but models show the first round of storms exiting eastward and a lull in precipitation during the afternoon hours.
This lull is critical as to how intense the second round of rain and storms is going to be. The more sunshine received, the more unstable the atmosphere will become, which would support severe storm development.
The Storm Prediction Center has west Alabama under a slight risk for severe storms on Friday evening and overnight. The slight risk includes Demopolis to Tuscaloosa to Jasper to Double Springs and points westward.
The greatest threat for severe storms will be locations across far northwest Alabama including the cities of Hamilton, Jasper, Fayette and Vernon. Main threats will be large hail and damaging winds.
Make sure you have your weather radio ready to go just in case a warning is issued tomorrow where you live.
TIMING: ROUND TWO
The second round arrives across west Alabama after 10 p.m. Friday and spreads eastward towards I-65 after midnight. Rain and storms will weaken as they move through overnight but will be ongoing through Saturday morning.
Three day total rainfall amounts will range from 1" to 3". The precipitation should wrap up from west to east by Saturday afternoon. Much drier weather is expected for the second half of the weekend.