Severe thunderstorms capable of producing damaging winds and a tornado are still possible on Saturday. Although they are possible, new data Thursday afternoon still suggests the risk is low. Low risk does not mean no risk, and a single severe thunderstorm is all it takes to ruin the day.
Over the last 24 hours, the timing of the biggest storms has been trending a bit earlier. Rather than Saturday evening, Saturday afternoon may be the prime impact period. Storms will arrive in the Shoals and the rest of Northwest Alabama between noon and 2 PM. The storms will cross I-65 near Athens and Decatur and move into Huntsville, Madison, and Fayetteville between 2 PM and 4 PM. The storms will arrive over Sand Mountains between 3 PM and 5 PM.
Saturday Storm Impacts
The storms can bring a quick burst of damaging winds in excess of 60 mph. A tornado or two is also possible. The biggest risk will be heavy rain. Rainfall amounts of 1-2 inches are possible. Locally higher amounts of up to 3 inches cannot be ruled out. Localized flash flooding is possible in poor drainage areas, especially given recent bouts of heavy rainfall.
Rain Over The Next 24 Hours
Areas of rain will increase after midnight tonight, too. The rain will mean a slippery Friday morning drive, and the kids will need rain gear out at the bus stops. Rain can fall heavily at times, especially in the afternoon. Severe thunderstorms are not likely on Friday, but that doesn't mean we can't get some lightning and thunder. Temperatures will warm from the 40s Friday morning to the mid-to-upper 50s Friday afternoon.
After Saturday's Storms
After the heavy rain a threat for severe thunderstorms on Saturday, Sunday will shape up to the better half of the weekend. Sunday through Tuesday will remain mostly dry, but heavy storms could return as early as late Wednesday next week.