Wednesday morning video forecast
Rain and thunderstorms will affect the area through Thursday afternoon. Much cooler temperatures will follow, but only for a short time.
Today and Tonight: A cold front will very slowly push into the area on Wednesday. Highs will peak in the mid 70s. Upper level winds are very favorable to support severe weather, but instability in the atmosphere may be somewhat limited by morning clouds and showers. Either way, enough ingredients are present to constitute a 2/5 “slight risk” for severe weather on Wednesday. The main threat from strong thunderstorms will be gusty wind. Secondarily, the slow moving nature of the cold front could lead to pockets of poor drainage flooding. Finally, an isolated tornado is possible. High resolution models suggest that scattered showers and thunderstorms will ramp up in intensity and coverage during the afternoon and evening hours. That will be the most likely time for strong thunderstorms. Overnight, as the cold front presses into the Baton Rouge area, rain and storms will consolidate into a steady batch of precipitation. That will be the most likely time for downpours and poor drainage flooding. Temperatures will back into the upper 50s.
Up Next: The cold front will barely be to the Mississippi/Alabama border by daybreak Thursday and therefore clouds and rain will linger. Additionally, thermometers will crash behind the boundary, with morning readings falling out of the 50s and into the 40s by dusk. Clearing skies overnight will guide lows into the mid 30s. Friday will be sunny and seasonable. Though there could be some passing clouds or light showers Saturday evening, generally quiet weather is expected through Sunday.
As a deep upper level trough and cold front move into the region on Wednesday, enhancing strong southwesterly wind flow at all levels of the atmosphere. These winds will advance moisture into the region and be supportive of rain and thunderstorms development. Looking at the key ingredients for severe weather, moisture will be bountiful and upper level winds will be strengthening through the day. Early clouds and showers may curtail daytime warming but the morning weather balloon launched by the National Weather Service in Slidell, confirmed that instability is already present.
This is important. Coming into today, "instability" was a questionable ingredient for severe weather. Knowing now that we do have enough, confidence has increased that some thunderstorms could turn strong later. https://t.co/otTfEyPbX8— Josh Eachus (@DrJoshWX) February 5, 2020
Should this instability persist or increase, strong and mostly unidirectional winds foretell a damaging wind threat. The possibility of tornadoes is lesser but not zero. Due to all of this, the Storm Prediction Center has placed all of the local area in a 2/5 “slight risk” for severe weather. It is possible, that strong thunderstorms will be limited to areas immediately along the front and close to any small scale low pressure areas particularly in central and northern Louisiana and Mississippi as these lifting features could overcome lacking instability. The cold front will continue to creep east Wednesday night into Thursday, and the trailing upper level trough and a disturbance spinning over the area will create another round of moderate to heavy rain. This persistent period could leave behind 1-4” around the forecast area, with highest amounts occurring east of the Mississippi River. Street and poor drainage flooding could result.
Showers may continue into Thursday morning. Persistent low clouds and falling temperatures will make for an uncomfortable day. Morning thermometers in the upper 50s and low 60s, will end up in the 40s by late afternoon. Friday will be dry and sunny. Forecast models are indicating that a weak cold front will race through the area later Saturday. This could lead to a brief period of clouds or even light showers, but will not result in any major impacts.
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