Sunday, August 27th 2017 Forecast Discussion

Good Sunday to you and yours.

Tropical Storm Harvey
Harvey's winds have died down to tropical storm status currently blowing at around 40 mph, but his threat is hardly behind us as "catastrophic and life-threatening flooding" (as per the NHC) and crippling numbers of tornadoes is resulting from the relentless rain bands and Harvey's crawling speed. Yesterday there were 35 issued tornado warnings and an average of 25 inches of rainfall, over 9 of which fell within an hour, for Houston. Today we have seen over 40 tornado warnings with more being issued as we count the minutes, and current broad range projections of 15-25+ inches are anticipated to fall from Harvey with isolated areas possibly as high as 40 inches before he's through. Tropical Storm Harvey has broken Tropical Storm Allison's flood records by 3 feet, and the NHC predicts that Harvey will remain in Texas as a tropical storm through Wednesday and a tropical depression as early as Friday. Words like devastating and crippling hardly seem to encompass the weight and severity of Houston's dire and culminating situation. Follow with us on potential opportunities to help those affected by Harvey in the following days and weeks. 

Local near term forecast (Sunday)

Current conditions for the area feature mostly cloudy skies with the potential for isolated storms to creep down the Blue Ridge into the Foothills. These storms aren't anticipated to be severe as there is only low instability, but there is a very slight chance of cloud to ground lightning. Diurnal high peaks us right at 80 degrees with a pleasant NE wind of around 7 mph. Tonight expect a low in the low 60's with partly cloudy conditions. 

Mid term forecast (Monday-Wednesday)

The earlier half of our work week has the opportunity of rain as a couple of different factors make their influence over the area. An upper level digging (strengthening) shortwave trough chugs through the Ohio River Valley and begins to shift into the region as well as a tropical wave currently noted as Tropical Disturbance 1 just east of Florida begins to move northeastward. Both of which will independently supply moisture and instability for reasonably anticipated rain events. Tropical Disturbance 1 has a 70% chance of becoming a cyclone with visible rotation already in play. Major areas of impact will include SC and NC's coastline with Hatteras already projected for 6+ inches of rain, but the area of impact will make it's way into the Foothills. Monday through Wednesday have mostly cloudy conditions, 30-40% chance of precipitation, highs in the upper 70's, lows in the low to mid 60's, and increasingly easterly winds. 

Long term forecast (Thursday-Saturday)

Thursday has a chance of being a slight breath between the upper level waves as our aforementioned shortwave is expected to "merge" with a stronger trough that will certainly bring in more rain into the area on Friday and Saturday. Forecast confidence for this time is moderately low with massive factors such as Harvey continue to make it's play and Tropical Disturbance 1 has yet to express it's full potential. Climatologically we can expect temperatures in the low 80's for the daily highs and mid 60's for the nightly lows, and it's reasonable to assume a 30% chance of precipitation on Friday night through possibly Sunday. Again, forecasting confidence remains a little low. 

Thank you for reading. 

Sinead Lockhart