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Afternoon showers, storms

1 year 7 months 5 days ago March 18, 2015 Mar 18, 2015 Wednesday, March 18 2015 March 18, 2015 4:48 AM in Weather
Source: WBRZ Weather Center
By: Meteorologist Josh Eachus

Beginning today, the region will enter a stretch featuring daily rain chances.


Today and Tonight: Thickening clouds will eventually produce some showers and thunderstorms this afternoon. The greatest rain coverage can be expected north of the interstates with more sporadic activity closer to the coast. During the afternoon hours, a storm or two could briefly become strong with gusty winds and heavy rain. Due to clouds and rain, highs won't quite be as warm as yesterday and should occur a little earlier-hitting the low 80s around lunchtime. Tonight, skies remain mostly cloudy, spotty showers will be possible and lows will keep in the 60s.

Looking Ahead: Thursday and Friday by no means look like washouts. However, 30-40% rain coverage each day means that scattered showers will need dodged. With a few more glimpses of sun compared to Wednesday, highs should make it into the low 80s. Meanwhile, overnight lows will stay in the 60s. A stronger system will kick through the area on Saturday with most of us picking up some rain.


Forecast Discussion: A shortwave trough navigating the southern branch of the jet stream will kick up a surface low pressure system in Texas today. The surface and upper level energy will cross our region enhancing shower and storm chances through Wednesday Evening. Some late winter moist air with forcing mechanisms in the form of a low and front will rise into a dry pocket in the mid-levels this afternoon. As a result, a few thunderstorms could bring gusty winds-especially closer to the better instability and the low-north of the interstates. Behind the surface low, a lagging cold front will stall in zonal flow across North Louisiana and Central Mississippi. Over the next few days, this stalled front will serve as a mechanism to trigger some spotty showers. However, with a lack of any significant upper level support, some dry times and even a bit of sun may be possible. As the front never dips south of the area, no significant drop off in thermometers is anticipated either. On Saturday, the next piece of upper level energy will swing through the area, kicking the front east and bringing one more organized batch of rain. Forecast models seem to want to clear the region out for a while beyond this early weekend impulse. So for now, we're carrying a drier forecast for Sunday and Monday, however confidence in that part of the forecast is low at this point.

--Meteorologist Josh Eachus

As spring storm season has arrived, stay connected with the latest weather information:

On Twitter: @Josh_Eachus

Online: wbrz.com/weather

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