WBRZ http://www.wbrz.com/ WBRZ Weather Weather en-us Copyright 2017, WBRZ. All Rights Reserved. Feed content is not avaialble for commercial use. () () Mon, 27 Feb 2017 22:02:06 GMT Synapse CMS 10 WBRZ http://www.wbrz.com/ 144 25 Stormy start to the week, drier for Mardi Gras http://www.wbrz.com/news/stormy-start-to-the-week-drier-for-mardi-gras/ http://www.wbrz.com/news/stormy-start-to-the-week-drier-for-mardi-gras/ Weather Mon, 27 Feb 2017 6:10:06 AM Meteorologist Josh Eachus Stormy start to the week, drier for Mardi Gras

While the week is beginning unsettled, timing of a cold front and thundershowers should work out just right for Mardi Gras.

THE FORECAST:

Today and Tonight: For Lundi Gras, expect scattered showers and thunderstorms through mid-afternoon. It will not rain constantly and while organized severe weather is not anticipated, a storm or tow could briefly produce downpours, gusty wind and/or small hail. Late day breaks of sun will help high temperatures into the mid to upper 70s. Mostly cloudy skies continue tonight with a sticky low temperature in the upper 60s—higher than a normal high for the time of year. Winds will be south, southeast at 5-10mph.

Up Next: Mardi Gras day is looking drier with more sunshine, but we can’t completely rule out an isolated shower. It's certainly not looking to washout any plans. A cold front will push through on Wednesday, and that will usher in some cool, dry air leading into a fairly normal beginning to March. The chance of rain returns Sunday.

THE SCIENCE: As a warm front lifts through the area with a pocket of vorticity advection, prime period of strong lift will exist through the mid-afternoon. Forcing will diminish through the late afternoon and evening hours as the region comes under the influence of increasing subsidence and negative vorticity advection. No significant low level feature is noted to serve as a focus of convective initiation today, but the highest omega and greatest overall instability looks to be over the northern third of the forecast area. Fortunately, wind shear will be somewhat limited across the area. The strongest shear will be located over the same area with the highest. Given the shear and instability noted, some stronger storms could develop north of I-12 through afternoon. An isolated severe thunderstorm could develop, but the overall threat is limited at best. If severe storms develop, mid-level lapse rates would support some hail development while shear profiles support some strong wind gusts coming from any severe storm. Farther to the south and east, the threat of severe storms is basically nil due to a lack of decent shear and less overall instability. The increased subsidence and negative vorticity advection over the area will persist through tomorrow. The biggest result from this subsidence will be a drying and warming of the mid-level airmass resulting in the production of a fairly strong mid-level cap. This cap will effectively limit cloud development during the day tomorrow, and as a result most of the forecast area is expected to remain warm and dry tomorrow. Highs will easily climb into the lower to middle 80s which is near record territory. Only Southwest Mississippi may see enough weakness in the cap to allow isolated showers and thunderstorms. Any convection should dissipate by Tuesday evening as instability decreases with the loss of daytime heating. Wednesday will be a day of transition as a trough moving through the Plains and into the Midwest and Northeast will drive a fairly strong cold front through the forecast area. Strong low level forcing along the front combined with increased positive vorticity advection aloft will favor the development of showers and thunderstorms throughout the day on Wednesday as the front sweeps through the area. There will be a limited threat of severe thunderstorms on Wednesday mainly due to continued steep mid-level lapse rates and decent instability. Directional shear values will remain limited, but should support the development of a few strong to possibly severe thunderstorms Wednesday Afternoon. Temperatures will remain quite warm ahead of the front, and daytime highs are expected to climb back into the 80s. Conditions will gradually improve Wednesday Night in the wake of the front as a drier and more stable airmass moves in. However, some lingering low level cloud cover and showers could affect coastal portions of the forecast area through the overnight hours. Temperatures will also begin to cool dramatically behind the front with lows dipping back into the 40s and lower 50s Wednesday night. A cool and stable airmass will dominate the Gulf South for Thursday and Friday. Subsidence aloft and the dry airmass should keep skies mostly clear both days. These clear skies will allow lows to dip into the upper 30s and 40s both Thursday and Friday nights. Heading into the upcoming weekend, model guidance has become a bit less bullish on the strength of a low pressure system moving out of Texas and across the Gulf South. Both models now show a much weaker and more open shortwave feature sliding through the region. Given this, now expect to see only isolated showers by Saturday Evening mainly due to some lingering dry air in the mid-levels. There will be little to no instability to speak of, and winds will remain easterly through the day, so thunderstorms are not anticipated to develop on Saturday. Heading into Sunday, continued moisture advection into the area, and a stronger onshore flow in the mid-levels will result in higher precipitable water values and greater rain chances. Some weak forcing will remain over the area as a vorticity max slides through on the back of a largely zonal flow regime in the upper levels. This vort lobe should provide just enough lift to spark off some scattered convection as temperatures warm into the middle 70s.

--Josh


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Passing shower tonight, pushing warmth out tomorrow http://www.wbrz.com/news/passing-shower-tonight-pushing-warmth-out-tomorrow/ http://www.wbrz.com/news/passing-shower-tonight-pushing-warmth-out-tomorrow/ Weather Fri, 24 Feb 2017 5:43:33 AM Meteorologist Josh Eachus Passing shower tonight, pushing warmth out tomorrow

The final weekend of the Carnival Season and the second for LSU Baseball should enjoy some more nice weather.  

THE FORECAST:

Today and Tonight: Morning fog will give way to sunshine and then a cold front will approach the area late. Ahead of this, temperatures will again stride for 80 degrees. As the front arrives during the evening hours, clouds will increase and a few showers may develop along the boundary. Coverage should be very low, but we can’t call it completely dry. This of course means a passing shower isn’t out of the question for the Krewe of Southdowns parade or the LSU Baseball game. Overnight, showers will end with cooler air moving in as winds shift northwesterly.

Up Next: Beneath sunny skies, weekend high temperatures will revert to more seasonable readings in the upper 60s. Sunday Morning will be chilly with lows near 40 degrees. It now looks as though showers and thunderstorms will be scattered about on Monday as highs return to the 70s. Of the two days, Mardi Gras looks less active, but still not totally dry. Another cold front will come by on Wednesday with showers and thunderstorms.

THE SCIENCE: A cold front will approach the area on Friday. Ahead of it, thermometers are expected to remain warm, registering yet another 80 degree day this winter season. Some sunshine is expected with a few more clouds developing into the afternoon hours. Some lift located ahead of and along the front may support the development of a few showers along the immediate boundary however; widespread or organized precipitation is not expected. Any rain that occurs will come after dusk. Rain coverage should not exceed 10-20 percent. By the weekend, the cold front will have pushed southeastward through the region with clearing and cooling in its wake. Skies should be cloud free through the weekend with light, northerly winds maintaining seasonable temperatures as highs make it into the upper 60s. Some wholesale changes have been made to the forecast for next week. A warm front will lift through the region on Monday. With some positive vorticity advection ongoing in the upper levels, scattered to numerous showers and thunderstorms are expected to develop. A lull may occur in the Tuesday timeframe before an eventual cold front comes by Wednesday triggering another round of showers and thunderstorms. It appears as though the front will orient parallel to the jet flow as it cross the region which will slow movement and also cause the front to weaken.       

--Josh


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Going for 20 and 21 http://www.wbrz.com/news/going-for-20-and-21/ http://www.wbrz.com/news/going-for-20-and-21/ Weather Thu, 23 Feb 2017 5:44:57 AM Meteorologist Josh Eachus Going for 20 and 21

If the Baton Rouge area can make it to 80s degrees today, that would continue to stretch a record count for the winter months. Previously, the most days over 80 degrees recorded in a winter came from December 1956 to February 1957 with 17. Up to date, this winter has reached 80 degrees 19 times. Two weeks ago, our team highlighted the possibility fo this record falling and explained the cause. 

THE FORECAST:

Today and Tonight: Sunny skies are expected into the afternoon hours with high temperatures eclipsing 80 degrees. Winds will be light and shifting east, southeast. Overnight, clear skies early will give way to some fog late with lows in the upper 50s.

Up Next: On Friday, partly sunny skies and warm temperatures are expected to continue before a cold front arrives late. At this point, it appears as though the front could squeeze out a stray shower Friday Night, but coverage should be very low with best chance north and west of Baton Rouge. Beyond the front weekend high temperatures will revert to more seasonable readings in the upper 60s. While Lundi Gras and Mardi Gras are given a warm and dry forecast for now, some weak disturbances moving overhead may introduce a shower mention as we get closer. 

THE SCIENCE: A slight upper level ridge will push over the region today allowing temperatures to spike in the low 80s under mostly sunny skies. Winds turning southerly overnight will result in some fog formation. A largely zonal, fast moving jet stream is expected leading into the weekend while another surface front approaches from the northwest. The front should kick through pretty quickly as a result, but forecast models do not present much mid-level moisture to support shower development. However, given the expected lift along the front and the unseasonably warmth, model QPF is coming in with .01” and thus will mention the possibility of a shower on Friday night. By the weekend, a push of more seasonable air is expected with brilliant sunshine and high sin the upper 60s for both days. A few disturbances in the upper levels may announce their presence with spotty showers entering the forecast, but the probability is so low this far out in time that a rain chance is not warranted. Thermometers will bounce back well above average once again Monday through Wednesday.   

--Josh


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Front through but more 80s on the way http://www.wbrz.com/news/front-through-but-more-80s-on-the-way/ http://www.wbrz.com/news/front-through-but-more-80s-on-the-way/ Weather Wed, 22 Feb 2017 5:59:18 AM Meteorologist Josh Eachus Front through but more 80s on the way

Even through a front has passed the region, temperatures will not change much. In fact, the record setting 80s of winter 2016-17 are again expected on Thursday and Friday.

THE FORECAST:

Today and Tonight: Morning clouds will give way to a mostly sunny sky during the afternoon and highs will head for the mid 70s. Winds will be north, northwest at 5-10mph. Overnight will be mostly clear with lows in the mid 50s.

Up Next: Thursday will be warm with little more than a few clouds. Highs will climb into the low 80s. Then, another front is expected Friday, and that will be one to bring us some relief from the unseasonably warm temperatures. It could squeeze out a shower Friday Night, but we just don’t see much at this point. Beyond the front weekend high temperatures will be in the upper 60s. Both Lundi and Mardi Gras days look warm and dry. We'll see how that forecast develops however in the coming days. Expect morning fog each day also until the weekend.

THE SCIENCE: As an upper level low pressure system pulls away from the region, clouds are expected to break into the afternoon hours. While winds will be briefly northerly, return flow will kick on Thursday and thus, patchy fog will be possible Friday Morning before the upper low finally weakens and moves even further southeast. This movement will make way for another cold front to move through Friday Night which will bring cool air. There is enough forcing with this front to develop some shower activity along the entire boundary and this may have to be bumped up to chance category. There are even some stability parameters that are unstable enough to show the possibility of some thunderstorms along this boundary developing as it moves through. Isolated showers along this boundary will be continued in this forecast for now but if trends show a deepening moist column, this may be updated later. Several nice days next week will be concluded with another cold front that should be within the area by early Thursday.

--Josh


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Isolated showers today; Mardi Gras weekend looking great http://www.wbrz.com/news/isolated-showers-today-mardi-gras-weekend-looking-great/ http://www.wbrz.com/news/isolated-showers-today-mardi-gras-weekend-looking-great/ Weather Tue, 21 Feb 2017 6:25:28 AM Meteorologist Robert Gauthreaux III Isolated showers today; Mardi Gras weekend looking great

Clouds are moving out this morning and being replaced by fog. Expect isolated showers today and perhaps a thunderstorms this afternoon. Temperatures will reach the mid to lower 70's. Overnight, rain should fade and we should see a little more clearing.

The system that brought us heavy rain last night is pushing east As lingering showers continue behind the line of storms, sunshine will follow Wednesday and Thursday. We won't be much cooler with this system that passed, but a cold front does come through Friday. This will bring our temperatures down to "normal" just in time for Mardi Gras weekend! We don't expect much rain with this front, but it could still squeeze out a shower Friday. Otherwise, expect partly sunny skies.

On Facebook: Meteorologist Robert Gauthreaux III

On Twitter: @RG3wbrz

En Español: Meteorólogo Roberto Gauthreaux III

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~RG3


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Storms, tornadoes damage dozens of homes in San Antonio area http://www.wbrz.com/news/storms-tornadoes-damage-dozens-of-homes-in-san-antonio-area/ http://www.wbrz.com/news/storms-tornadoes-damage-dozens-of-homes-in-san-antonio-area/ Weather Mon, 20 Feb 2017 7:49:05 AM Associated Press Storms, tornadoes damage dozens of homes in San Antonio area

SAN ANTONIO - At least three tornadoes have hit parts of San Antonio and its suburbs, damaging dozens of homes but causing no major injuries.

A National Weather Service survey team confirmed that a tornado struck a residential area about 5 miles north of downtown around midnight Sunday.

San Antonio Fire Department spokesman Woody Woodward says 43 homes were damaged in the area, including three that collapsed, along with eight apartment buildings. He says five minor injuries were reported.

Another tornado was confirmed in northeastern San Antonio. Woodward says more than 100 structures citywide were damaged.

The weather service confirmed a third, weaker tornado about 10 miles northeast of downtown in Bexar County. County spokeswoman Monica Ramos says 30 to 40 homes were damaged in two adjoining subdivisions in the area.

Click here to go to the WBRZ Weather Center


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Rain expected for Friday Evening events http://www.wbrz.com/news/rain-expected-for-friday-evening-events/ http://www.wbrz.com/news/rain-expected-for-friday-evening-events/ Weather Fri, 17 Feb 2017 6:02:37 AM Meteorologist Josh Eachus Rain expected for Friday Evening events

Even with showers in the forecast tonight, a packed weekend of events couldn’t ask for a much better February forecast—especially when it comes to temperatures.

THE FORECAST:

Today and Tonight: Clouds will increase quickly on Friday with temperatures making it into the upper 60s. Showers are expected to develop as early as afternoon, with a chance for rain and thunderstorms through Saturday Morning. This does mean that Friday Evening outdoor events like LSU Baseball will need to be wary of rain. All indications from high resolution future radar are that the highest rain chances will be between 6pm – 2am.     

Up Next: Skies will clear out in a hurry on Saturday and a dry and warm weekend is in store. High temperatures will climb into the upper 70s on Saturday. Overnight lows will stop in the upper 50s on Sunday Morning before thermometers take a run at 80 degrees during a mostly sunny afternoon. Fans at Alex Box Stadium along with the rescheduled Krewe of Artemis, Krewe of Mystique and Krewe of Mutts revelers will call the weather a treat when compared to some past February events! Rain and thunderstorms return to the forecast by Tuesday.

THE SCIENCE: Changes come quickly on Friday as a surface high pressure system moves eastward allowing return flow to kick back. Meanwhile, a fast moving shortwave trough in the upper levels will move across the Central Gulf Coast. Positive vorticity advection and increasing mid-level humidity will allow a deck of clouds to develop through the morning. As the wave interacts with this increasing atmospheric moisture, lift should be vigorous enough to kick out showers and a few thunderstorms. While timing isn’t exact, all models have QPF between 6pm Friday and 6am Saturday. A mostly nocturnal rain is therefore expected, however showers could affect outdoor events on Friday Evening. The wave will quickly exit on Saturday leaving a mainly quiet weekend. As southerly winds continue, highs will once again be pushed well above average and near 80 degrees by Sunday. Partly to mostly sunny afternoons are anticipated with a weak upper level ridge overhead. Into next week, a slower moving and deeper wave will begin to interact with the area. Several days of gulf moisture will provide the approaching wave with plenty of fuel for a more widespread rain event. Some forecast models are cutting the upper low off in East Texas which could lead to a more prolonged event into Wednesday and thus some respectable rain totals. Right now, the WPC is forecasting 1-3” of rain for Southeast Louisiana, but depending on if whether or not that system does indeed cut off, totals may need to be adjusted upward. As far as temperatures go, above average readings are expected right through next week and the end of the month.   

--Josh


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Krewe of Artemis, LSU Baseball may be dodging showers http://www.wbrz.com/news/krewe-of-artemis-lsu-baseball-may-be-dodging-showers/ http://www.wbrz.com/news/krewe-of-artemis-lsu-baseball-may-be-dodging-showers/ Weather Thu, 16 Feb 2017 5:39:07 AM Meteorologist Josh Eachus Krewe of Artemis, LSU Baseball may be dodging showers

Thursday Morning could be one of if not the last taste of wintry temperatures this season. On average, the last freeze occurs around Feb. 24. At this point, the last freeze registered in Baton Rouge was on January 8. Previously, the earliest, last freeze of the season came on January 11 in 1952. But that mark could be ousted here in 2017 as above average temperatures are expected right into Early March.  

THE FORECAST:

Today and Tonight: Bright sunshine is in store for Thursday with seasonable temperatures in the mid 60s. The overnight hours will continue to bring clear skies with low temperatures backing off into the mid 40s—likely several degrees warmer than Thursday Morning.

Up Next: Changes come quick on Friday with increasing clouds and milder temperatures. A fast moving disturbance is expected to produce showers in Southeastern Louisiana from the afternoon into the overnight hours. This means that the LSU Baseball opener and Krewe of Artemis parade cannot be guaranteed dry, but neither event should washout either. Beyond that, outdoor plans will be in fine shape this weekend with partly sunny skies and high temperatures making a run at 80 degrees. Fans at Alex Box Stadium along with Krewe of Mystique and Krewe of Mutts revelers will likely be in shorts! Rain and thunderstorms return to the forecast by Tuesday.

THE SCIENCE: Surface high pressure moving over the region on Thursday will allow ample sunshine and temperatures to warm by about 30 degrees back to a seasonable reading in the mid 60s. Changes come quickly on Friday as the high moves eastward allowing return flow to kick back. Meanwhile, a fast moving shortwave trough in the upper levels will move across the Central Gulf Coast. While moisture will be somewhat limited, vorticity should be vigorous enough to kick out a few showers—especially in coastal areas. The wave will exit on Saturday leaving a mainly quiet weekend. As southerly winds continue, highs will once again be pushed well above average and push 80 degrees by Sunday. Partly to mostly sunny afternoons are anticipated with a weak upper level ridge overhead. Into next week, a slower moving and deeper wave will begin to interact with the area. Several days of gulf moisture will provide the approaching wave with plenty of fuel for a more widespread rain event. Some forecast models are cutting the upper low off in East Texas which could lead to a more prolonged event into Wednesday and thus some respectable rain totals. Right now, the WPC is forecasting 1-3” of rain for Southeast Louisiana, but depending on if whether or not that system does indeed cut off, totals may need to be adjusted upward. As far as temperatures go, above average readings are expected right through next week and the end of the month.   

--Josh 


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So this is what winter feels like http://www.wbrz.com/news/so-this-is-what-winter-feels-like/ http://www.wbrz.com/news/so-this-is-what-winter-feels-like/ Weather Wed, 15 Feb 2017 5:56:22 AM Meteorologist Josh Eachus So this is what winter feels like

Generally quiet weather will carry into another weekend of Mardi Gras parades and the LSU Baseball opener. However, do expect a fast warming trend after cool temperatures today and tomorrow.

THE FORECAST:

Today and Tonight: Quieter weather is on tap for Wednesday. After plenty of cloud cover, some sunshine will return later. Due to a northerly wind shift, highs will struggle for 60 degrees. Overnight, full clearing is expected and lows will respond by dipping into the upper 30s.

Up Next: Bright sunshine is in store for Thursday with seasonable temperatures in the low to mid 60s. Changes come quick on Friday with increasing clouds and an isolated shower possible late. For LSU Baseball and the Krewe of Artemis parade, while it is premature to rule out a shower, neither event should washout. Overall, outdoor plans will be in fine shape once again this weekend with partly sunny skies and high temperatures making a run at 80 degrees—with Sunday looking warmer. Rain and thunderstorms return to the forecast by Tuesday.

THE SCIENCE: A longwave trough digging into the Southeastern United States has phased with the shortwave that moved across the Gulf Coast on Tuesday. The associated surface low pressure system and cold front is well east of the local area and a surface high pressure is moving from the Mountain West into South Texas. A surface trough axis will cut across the area today as winds turn northerly and this will lead to a period of cloud cover early. With north winds, expect high temperatures to not climb but another 10-15 degrees from the morning hours. Skies will clear late and remain that way through Thursday as high pressure moves overhead. Optimal cooling conditions will be in place Thursday Night with many locations experiencing the upper 30s. By Friday, the surface high will position on the East Coast, reestablishing return flow. A warm front will lift through the area and a fast moving shortwave is going to cross the region on Friday. This will present an uptick in cloud coverage and a shower can’t be ruled out, especially near the coast. Upper ridging will then move over the area this weekend, permitting another warm up to well above average temperatures. Forecast models show another sharp trough moving across the coastal plain on Tuesday presenting the next opportunity for rain and thunderstorms. Looking long-term, forecast models suggest temperatures will be quite warm next week. Several more 80 degree afternoons may be in store.

--Josh


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An evening date with rain and storms http://www.wbrz.com/news/an-evening-date-with-rain-and-storms/ http://www.wbrz.com/news/an-evening-date-with-rain-and-storms/ Weather Tue, 14 Feb 2017 6:17:18 AM Meteorologist Josh Eachus An evening date with rain and storms

Strong storms are possible this evening prior to a cooler and quieter second half of the week.

THE FORECAST:

Today and Tonight: After a dry beginning, clouds are expected to increase through Valentine’s Day and showers and thunderstorms may disrupt some plans later. As of now, timing brings action into the area close to the afternoon commute which could mean a dicey drive. Additionally, a few storms could be severe. Stay in touch with the forecast for updates and any alerts. Highs will make it into the upper 70s. Overnight, thunderstorms will end from west to east with just a few lingering showers possible into the morning. Lows will drop into the low 50s as winds shift to the northwest. 


The National Weather Service Storm Prediction Center (SPC) has issued a “slight risk” for severe weather this evening. This means an isolated severe storm is possible within the forecast area. On a scale of 1 (lowest) to 5 (highest) severe weather threat, this event is a 1. Another way of describing the threat is that there is a 5 percent chance of experiencing severe weather within 25 miles of a given point in the risk area. This storm system will not bring widespread, intense severe storms like last Tuesday. Still, we must give respect to the threat as one or two spots in the 13 Parish, 3 County forecast area could see a nasty storm.

Possible Threats:

1) Gusty Wind – in storms that turn severe, wind gusts could exceed 58mph.

2) Tornadoes – plenty of low level wind shear will give storms that do develop the ability to rotate.

3) Hail—in the most intense storms, some marginally severe hail (1” in diameter) could make it to the ground.

Precipitation: Generally, less than a half inch of rain is expected, though a locally higher amount could occur within the 13 Parish, 3 County Forecast Area—especially where the heaviest storms occur.

Estimated Timeline: The timing of this system is pretty straightforward. Showers and thunderstorms are expected to arrive in a cluster or line during the afternoon hours. At this time, areas west of the Mississippi River should see the onset of rain and storms by 5pm with action making it to Baton Rouge by 7pm and I-55 by 9pm. The main issue with timing is arrival. Should the system speed up and move in just an hour or two earlier, the late commute could be significantly affected, so keep in touch for forecast updates. The severe weather threat will be relatively short in span, with the greatest likelihood for strong storms at the leading edge of precipitation. While some showers may linger overnight, impact weather will conclude by midnight.

Impacts: Have a Valentine’s Day dinner date? Carry on… just be sure you have access to alerts while out and about. Know that travel could be difficult in a brief downpour or in the event of severe thunderstorms. For the most part, indoor restaurants and movie theatres are safe places in severe storms. Just remember in the event a tornado or severe thunderstorm warning, move away from windows. And to repeat, if the storms arrive just a tad earlier than current expectations, the late commute could prove difficult. Monitor the forecast and be prepared for delays if storms arrive sooner.

Actions: Have access to watches and warnings such as with a NOAA Weather Radio or from the WBRZ Weather Team on Facebook and Twitter. Additionally, the *free* WBRZ WX App. sends push notifications to mobile devices if a watch or warning is issued for your location. Remember, a watch means “conditions are favorable, and a particular threat could develop” and a warning means that “threat is happening and you should take action immediately.” In a tornado warning, seek shelter in a low-level interior room and avoid mobile homes is possible. In a severe thunderstorm warning, get inside of any sturdy structure.


Up Next: Clouds will break from west to east through Wednesday. Some sunshine is possible by afternoon. With winds turned around to the north, highs will stop in the low 60s. A seasonably cool start is anticipated on Thursday with highs back into the low 60s beneath ample afternoon sun. Clouds and mild air will return quickly on Friday Afternoon. There will be just a slim chance of a passing shower overnight into Saturday followed by a warm weekend with partly to mostly cloudy skies.

THE SCIENCE: A negatively titled shortwave trough moving into our region will merge with a longwave moving out of the Great Lakes Region this evening. As it does so, the trough will become more neutral. An associated surface low and cold front will move across the Central Gulf Coast in response to this phasing. Instability is expected to be limited while helicity will be high. This all sets up the typical conditional Central Gulf Coast winter time severe weather threat.  A cluster of showers and thunderstorms, perhaps congealing into a line, will move into the area during the evening hours. Given the front forcing, a few updrafts may become strong enough upon breaking through a stable surface layer. Wind fields will be strong enough that gusty winds could mix down or a tornado could spin up along the leading storms. As far as duration goes, the severe weather threat should be generally limited to the onset of storms. The SPC continues to carry a “marginal risk” of severe storms with gusty wind, isolated tornadoes and hail the top three threats. By midnight, most of the action will be wrapping up with just lingering showers into Wednesday Morning as the cold front sweeps east. A surface high pressure system in the Mountain West will allow northerly winds to push cooler temperatures into the area for Wednesday and Thursday. Highs will be closer to normal until Friday when the high shifts off of the East Coast and return flow kicks back into gear. A fairly sharp shortwave trough will kick through Friday into Saturday. Right now, the moisture fields look limited meaning passing clouds are the most likely scenario but this will need to be watched for a few showers if the lower levels can saturate a little better.       

--Josh


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More warm winter records in Baton Rouge http://www.wbrz.com/news/more-warm-winter-records-in-baton-rouge/ http://www.wbrz.com/news/more-warm-winter-records-in-baton-rouge/ Weather Mon, 13 Feb 2017 11:16:19 AM Meteorologist Josh Eachus More warm winter records in Baton Rouge

This winter has been warm, really warm. Since January, the WBRZ Weather team has been providing updates to note that the current meteorological winter (December through February) is well on its way to becoming the warmest on record in Baton Rouge.

Current Standings

After a pair of 80 degree days over the weekend, bringing Baton Rouge to a total of six for the month of February, a quick data check revealed another warm record about to be shattered. With 17, the Capital City has already tied a 1957 benchmark for most 80 degree days in a winter season, with a solid two weeks to go! Forecast models suggest several more 80 degree days could come.

Many unseasonable spring-like afternoons have boosted the region into the third spot for warmest winters. These records, like the 80 degree statistics go back to 1930 at Baton Rouge Metropolitan Airport.

Records Abound!

The Baton Rouge area isn’t alone in knocking down warm winter records. Since December 2016, there have been 4,840 record highs to just 2,168 record lows in the United States. This past weekend saw some particularly impressive records fall. Northern Texas, Western Kansas and Oklahoma, and Eastern Colorado set all-time February records for warmest temperatures. Beaver, Oklahoma hit 93 degrees on Saturday, February 11! The previous monthly record at that site was 90 degrees set on February 28, 1904!

Will the Warmth Continue?

It sure seems that way. Any way you look it, from the Climate Prediction Center Outlook through March, to the upper level forecast charts—February 2017 should wrap well above average meaning both impressive warm records should fall.

What is the Cause?

While many would be quick to jump on the global warming wagon—a common culprit for long-term rising temperature trends—this warm winter in Baton Rouge is most likely part La Niña and part anomaly. During the winter months, El Niño’s cooler counterpart in the Southwestern Pacific Ocean tends to cause warmer temperatures across the Southern Tier of the United States. Oddly, a drier pattern is often noted as well, though this winter has been particularly wet due to isolated extreme rain events in January.

In addition to La Niña spurring warmer southern winters, the Gulf of Mexico has been unseasonably warm of late. As areas of high pressure set up along the East Coast of the United States, warm southerly breezes have been transporting warmer air inland and boosting thermometers.

Can I Plant my Garden?    

Since 1930, the last freeze in Baton Rouge has averaged out to occur on February 24. A freeze between now and then seems highly unlikely. However, freezes have occurred as late as April 13 with 122 freezes after February 24 over the last 86 years. But, just like the near term, the long term favors a warm pattern making another freeze a tough proposition. By the books, it seems a little early. By the forecast, you might just get away with it.

Stick with the WBRZ Weather Team as we continue to monitor the warm records and bring you long-term forecasts for the coming weeks.          


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The date could be a little rocky http://www.wbrz.com/news/the-date-could-be-a-little-rocky/ http://www.wbrz.com/news/the-date-could-be-a-little-rocky/ Weather Mon, 13 Feb 2017 6:20:26 AM Meteorologist Josh Eachus The date could be a little rocky

A weak front passed through last night and it has knocked our temperatures down a peg, but still not to seasonable levels. The risk for strong thunderstorms returns Tuesday Night. The format this time should be a little different than last week’s tornado outbreak—with a line or cluster of storms moving through over a shorter timeframe.

THE FORECAST:

Today and Tonight: Skies will start cloudy with a little sun breaking out by afternoon. While it won’t be as warm as the weekend, highs will still be above average, making it to near 70 degrees. Overnight will be partly cloudy with lows in the low to mid 50s.

Up Next: Tuesday will begin dry. Clouds are expected to increase through Valentine’s Day and showers and thunderstorms may disrupt some plans late. As of now, timing brings action into the area just after the evening commute, but obviously just a small speed up in the system could mean a dicey drive. The Storm Prediction Center has placed the WBRZ Weather forecast area in a “slight risk” for severe weather. The main threats with this system will be gusty wind as storm form into a cluster or line. Still, it is possible for a tornado to spin up within these clusters. Duration will not be as long as Last Tuesday’s event as storms should progress through the area quickly. Check in with the forecast through Tuesday and make sure you have a way to get watches and warnings in case they are issued. A NOAA Weather Radio and the free WBRZ WX. App. can both provide those important alerts. A shower may linger into the early morning hours of Wednesday, but the severe weather threat will be well passed by that time. High will be cooler on the other side of the passing storm system. Highs will stop in the low 60s on Wednesday and Thursday with afternoon sunshine.

THE SCIENCE: Winds will begin to switch around to the southeast going into Tuesday as a surface high moves toward the East Coast. An upper level low is expected to track into eastern Texas by Tuesday Afternoon. At the same time, another upper trough will be dropping south across Canada into the Great Lakes Region. The southern low will merge with the northern trough Tuesday Night into Wednesday. As this happens, surface cyclogenesis will begin to take place in Southeast Texas. Medium range forecast models continue to align more closely in the timing, location and track of this surface trough. They show this surface low moving into Central Louisiana around 6pm Tuesday which is about 6 hours sooner than shown 24 hours ago. The low will progress east across South-Central Mississippi and Alabama during the following 12 hours. Showers and thunderstorms will be moving east along and ahead of the cold front attached to the surface low Tuesday Afternoon, reaching western portions of the forecast area around 6pm Tuesday. Model soundings show destabilization of the atmosphere occurring as low level moisture increases. The amount of instability is in question with some forecast profiles of the atmosphere showing minimal CAPE values and others have it exceeding 1500j/kg. Models do agree that there will be a northward limit to severe potential due to an inversion. Therefore better chances will be found along and south of I-12 and likely closer to the coast. Wrap around moisture will lead to light showers on the backside of the low for much of the day on Wednesday, but some sun is possible by the second half. The remainder of the week will be quiet as the region is under post trough airmass followed by upper ridging.


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Storm survey crews confirm six tornado touchdowns http://www.wbrz.com/news/storm-survey-crews-confirm-six-tornado-touchdowns/ http://www.wbrz.com/news/storm-survey-crews-confirm-six-tornado-touchdowns/ Weather Thu, 9 Feb 2017 11:06:38 AM WBRZ staff Storm survey crews confirm six tornado touchdowns

BATON ROUGE - The National Weather Service confirmed six tornado touchdowns during Tuesday's severe weather.

An EF-2 tornado touched down in Killian where two people were injured and a damage path of about one mile. Winds were an estimated 120 miles per hour. Two homes were found destroyed along Davidson Road, along with two others that received heavy damage. Homes of Carthage Bluff Road also sustained damage.

In Watson, two people were also hurt after a tornado with winds at an estimated 140 mph touched down near Little Woods Road south of Sims Road. The tornado strengthened and grew in size as it moved east. According to the National Weather Service, the tornado produced EF-1 and EF-2 damage to structures and trees as it moved across Nan Wesley Road, Highways 1023, 447 and 63. The damage path was 6.3 miles.

A tornado track in Donaldsonville in Ascension Parish was found and moved east 6 miles into St. James Parish. The tornado impacted small communities near the LA 70 bridge with damage sustained primarily to roofs of homes, trees and power lines. Some homes even shifted off of their foundation, according to the National Weather Service. Maximum winds reached an estimated 105 miles per hour.

In Metairie, minor damage was sustained around Elmood. The National Weather Services says that tornado winds reached an estimated 80 miles per hour.

In eastern New Orleans, there were reports of an E-F 3 tornado that left 25 injured. A preliminary report indicates that 60 homes and structures sustained damage.

In Holden, an EF-1 tornado was confirmed with winds of 100mph.

Storm survey crews are still inspecting damage with more possible tornado confirmations. Crews are checking to see if damage paths are connected or if there were separate tornadoes.


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Good to be king, good to be in Louisiana http://www.wbrz.com/news/good-to-be-king-good-to-be-in-louisiana/ http://www.wbrz.com/news/good-to-be-king-good-to-be-in-louisiana/ Weather Fri, 10 Feb 2017 6:02:59 AM Meteorologist Josh Eachus Good to be king, good to be in Louisiana

The theme for the Krewe of Orion parade this year can be tweaked just a bit to describe how many feel about living in the bayou state! While some dig out of snow in the Northeastern United States, we'll put on shorts this weekend. Mainly dry and warmer than average conditions will prevail through Sunday.

THE FORECAST:

Today and Tonight: The week will end with mostly sunny skies and a return to above normal temperatures. High temperatures will top out around 76 degrees with southeast winds of 5-10mph. Overnight, partial cloud cover and patchy fog is possible with lows near 60 degrees.  

Up Next: Overall, the weekend is looking quiet and mild. With partly sunny skies, highs will make it to nearly 80 degrees each afternoon. There is a very small chance for an isolated shower west of Baton Rouge on Saturday and then a slightly better chance for spotty showers later Sunday. Fog may develop each morning, but is more likely on Sunday. The Krewe of Orion will roll Saturday Night in Baton Rouge with partly cloudy skies and temperatures near 70 degrees. While there is some uncertainty on timing, confidence is high in a storm system bringing rain and thunderstorms to the area in the Tuesday to Wednesday timeframe next week. Stay tuned as we work out the details! 

THE SCIENCE: With surface high pressure sliding by to the north, benign weather conditions will prevail through Friday. As the surface high pressure positions off of the East Coast over the weekend, return flow will kick in sending temperatures well above average. In addition to the warmer ambient temperature, dew points will also be on the rise. With light winds and partially clear skies, both Saturday and Sunday Morning could feature some fog. In addition, weak upper level ridging will boost thermometers. High temperatures will be well above average and approach 80 degrees each afternoon. A slow-moving front will move into the region on Monday returning the possibility of showers and thunderstorms. While Monday looks like a fairly isolated rain event, Tuesday looks much more active. Forecast models want to develop a surface low pressure along the west to east oriented boundary which would then ride across the forecast area bringing a round of widespread rain and thunderstorms. Depending on the track of the surface low, heavy rain and strong thunderstorms could be on the table as well—but time will tell on that. By the middle of next week, another cool down will come on the other side of the front.

--Josh


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Weak and short La Nina fades away; climate shifts to neutral http://www.wbrz.com/news/weak-and-short-la-nina-fades-away-climate-shifts-to-neutral/ http://www.wbrz.com/news/weak-and-short-la-nina-fades-away-climate-shifts-to-neutral/ Weather Thu, 9 Feb 2017 8:14:13 AM Associated Press Weak and short La Nina fades away; climate shifts to neutral

WASHINGTON - - La Nina, we hardly knew ye.

U.S. weather forecasters said Thursday the cool flip side to the climate phenomenon El Nino has faded away.

The La Nina episode lasted only four months and was among the weakest and shortest on record, coming on the heels of one of the strongest El Ninos, said Mike Halpert of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Climate Prediction Center.

La Nina, a cooling of parts of the equatorial Pacific that changes weather patterns worldwide, often lasts a year or more, longer than El Ninos. La Nina conditions were first detected in October and disappeared in January.

"Even though it was fairly weak and short-lived ... it did leave impacts," Halpert said, pointing to unusual cold in Alaska, western Canada and U.S. Northern Plains in December and January.

Strong La Ninas usually follow powerful El Ninos, which didn't happen in this case, said University of Washington atmospheric scientist Mike Wallace.

Many computer models show an El Nino forming later this summer or fall, but NOAA isn't making a prediction yet, Halpert said.

If an El Nino returns quickly, it would be fairly unusual. Switching from El Nino to La Nina and back in less than three years has happened only once before in the 1960s, Halpert said.

La Nina's disappearance leaves the world in what is called a neutral condition, making it tougher for meteorologists to make seasonal or long-term forecasts.

"In the forecast game you like big signals," Wallace said.

Because of persistent warming, forecasters will continue to call for warmer than normal temperatures for much of the United States.

"You can't really go wrong if you are forecasting above-normal temperatures for a large part of the country because that's what you get," Halpert said.


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Front brings seasonable feel locally, snow to northeast http://www.wbrz.com/news/front-brings-seasonable-feel-locally-snow-to-northeast/ http://www.wbrz.com/news/front-brings-seasonable-feel-locally-snow-to-northeast/ Weather Thu, 9 Feb 2017 6:05:41 AM Meteorologist Josh Eachus Front brings seasonable feel locally, snow to northeast

A cold front arrives today on the heels of Tuesday’s severe weather outbreak. The same storm system will be responsible for heavy snow and significant travel delays in the Northeastern United States—take note if you will be flying on Thursday or Friday.  

THE FORECAST:

Today and Tonight: Your Thursday will be cooler with highs much closer to average in the mid 60s. Some mid and high level clouds are expected during the first half of the day with more blue and sun showing up in skies for the second half of the day. Overnight will be clear with lows in the mid 40s.

Up Next: The February feel will leave as quickly as it arrived, however. Temperatures are expected to return to the 70s on Friday and possible the 80s by Sunday. While we expect to see some sun on Sunday, clouds will increase into the evening and some late night showers or early morning thunderstorms may follow. This is related to another system which should knock our temperatures back down a peg. Tuesday is Valentine's Day, and with some lingering rain and storms expected, plan your picnic carefully!

THE SCIENCE: With a cold front slipping south, a surface high will move over the Mid Mississippi River Valley today, maintaining a northerly wind. High pressure will continue to slide east tonight Friday and winds will become more easterly and southeasterly late. As the surface high moves into the Eastern Atlantic this weekend, southerly flow will return moisture and dewpoint readings will increase back into the 60s on Saturday and mid 60s by Sunday. Very isolated showers may fall Saturday Afternoon in area north and west of Baton Rouge. Light southerly winds, mostly clear skies and radiational cooling may allow fog development Sunday morning. An approaching front will bring the next shot at rain across the forecast area Sunday Night and Monday. Cooler temperatures will make another brief appearance behind the wet weather by the middle of next week.

--Josh


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National Weather Service investigates intensity of Tuesday's tornadoes http://www.wbrz.com/news/national-weather-service-investigates-intensity-of-tuesday-s-tornadoes/ http://www.wbrz.com/news/national-weather-service-investigates-intensity-of-tuesday-s-tornadoes/ Weather Wed, 8 Feb 2017 11:27:50 AM Meteorologist Robert Gauthreaux III National Weather Service investigates intensity of Tuesday's tornadoes

SLIDELL - The National Weather Service has sent three crews this morning to investigate damage from yesterday's tornadoes. Unlike hurricanes, tornado intensity is not known until after the storm has passed and damage is assessed.

According to the weather service, the first crew has determined that an EF-3 tornado touched down in New Orleans East. The crew is trying to track it back to known damage in Jefferson Parish. This may actually be two separate tornadoes from the same storm.

The second crew is heading to Donaldsonville and will track that tornado damage to at least north of Convent. At this time, damage is at least EF-1, but it is not yet finalized.

The third crew is in route to the Killian to the southern Tangipahoa track. If this crew has time they will also head to Watson to survey the damage there.

There are other areas that may need to be surveyed over the next day or so as other tracks may exist in which the weather service is not aware.

This story will be updated as necessaary as information is received regarding new paths, tornado intensity, or other severe reports.

On Facebook: Meteorologist Robert Gauthreaux III

On Twitter: @RG3wbrz

En Español: Meteorólogo Roberto Gauthreaux III

In American Sign Langauge: Meteorologist Robert Gauthreaux III - ASL

~RG3


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PHOTOS: Tornadoes strike Southeast Louisiana http://www.wbrz.com/news/photos-tornadoes-strike-southeast-louisiana/ http://www.wbrz.com/news/photos-tornadoes-strike-southeast-louisiana/ Weather Tue, 7 Feb 2017 10:29:36 AM WBRZ staff PHOTOS: Tornadoes strike Southeast Louisiana

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Big changes today--Sort of http://www.wbrz.com/news/big-changes-today-sort-of/ http://www.wbrz.com/news/big-changes-today-sort-of/ Weather Wed, 8 Feb 2017 6:28:24 AM Meteorologist Robert Gauthreaux III Big changes today--Sort of

The National Weather Service in New Orleans issued 42 warnings yesterday; 35 of those were tornado warnings. We'll have more information later today on the intensity of those tornadoes. Unlike hurricanes, we don't know how strong a tornado was until after it has passed. The National Weather Service will be busy today investigating the damage.

Much quieter weather is ahead. Temperatures however, remain hot and we remain humid.

This morning's low temperature will likely be tomorrow's high temperature. That said, it's still several degrees above the average afternoon high temperature for this time of year.

Today will be partly cloudy and early followed by a little more clearing into the afternoon hours. High temperatures will remain mild, topping out near 80 degrees. A cold front is expected to lag into the area tonight, dropping temperatures back into the 50s by tomorrow morning. Sunshine will be around for the afternoon with high temperatures stopping in the upper 60s.

The remainder of the week will be quiet with the coolest readings coming into the mid 40s early Friday. Some high clouds may return Friday, but should not be of any consequence. The weekend will be unseasonably warm again with mostly to partly sunny skies and highs in the upper 70s to nearly 80 degrees. The next threat for rain will be Monday.

On Facebook: Meteorologist Robert Gauthreaux III

On Twitter: @RG3wbrz

En Español: Meteorólogo Roberto Gauthreaux III

In American Sign Langauge: Meteorologist Robert Gauthreaux III - ASL

~RG3


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Scenes of disaster after storm hits New Orleans http://www.wbrz.com/news/scenes-of-disaster-after-storm-hits-new-orleans/ http://www.wbrz.com/news/scenes-of-disaster-after-storm-hits-new-orleans/ Weather Tue, 7 Feb 2017 1:22:57 PM WBRZ Scenes of disaster after storm hits New Orleans

NEW ORLEANS - Parts of eastern New Orleans are looking like a disaster area following a line of severe weather that just blew through the city.

The storm flipped over cars, tore roofs off homes, ripped through a gas station canopy, broke tall power poles off their foundations, flipped a food truck upside-down and left a couch resting improbably on a pile of debris in the middle of a road.

New Orleans East resident James Thomas says his whole neighborhood shows storm damage, but his house escaped a tornado with a near miss.

He says, "It's bad. I've never seen it this bad." He says "As far as I can see, treetops are off, power lines down."

Thomas says he saw the twister coming, grabbed his motorcycle helmet and ran into his bathroom.

He says the room went pitch-black, he heard hail on the window, and came outside afterward to see a damage trail or about 20 to 40 feet from his house.

One driver was trapped in his truck by power lines that wrapped around the cab.

As the storm blew over New Orleans, the sun could only be seen on the faraway horizon, below dark grey thunderheads that seemed to turn the day into night.

Press Secretary Sean Spicer says the White House is monitoring the severe weather going through Louisiana. He says President Donald Trump is aware of the situation and is going to be reaching out to local and state officials throughout the day.

Mayor Mitch Landrieu  says there are initial reports of dozens of minor injuries and two more serious injuries. A spokesman for the Emergency Medical Service described most of those injured Tuesday as "walking wounded," with minor cuts and scrapes.

City officials say about 10,000 homes are without power and there are reports of gas leaks in the area.

Police Chief Michael Harrison says they've closed Interstate 10 eastbound from Downman to Interstate 510 and westbound from I-510 to the Downman exit. That covers most exits that would go into the affected areas. He urged people to stay off the roads and out of the affected areas.

Harrison says patrols are doing house-by-house searches in the neighborhoods to make sure no one's trapped by falling debris or other damage.

Yoshekia Brown lost everything to Hurricane Katrina. Now she's lost everything again, to a tornado.

Three-quarters of her home in East New Orleans is collapsed. She says her living room and front bedroom are gone. Luckily her 2-year-old son and three dogs have survived.

She says her home was insured, but she's not sure what to do next.

And despite being struck twice by disaster, she's telling herself that 'something good has to come from this.'


Read more at WWLTV.com


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