We will have pretty quiet weather tonight. Any rain will come to an end and we will be partly cloudy. It will be muggy with lows in the 70s.
Weekend Forecast: Saturday will be hot, humid and mostly dry with only a slight chance for a shower or storm. High temperatures will be in the lower 90s and the heat index will be around 100°.
The weather starts to change on Sunday as Hurricane Ida makes landfall on SE Louisiana during the afternoon/evening hours. Central Alabama will become mostly cloudy with some late-day showers and thunderstorms moving in from Ida’s outer rain bands. The rain could be heavy at times and we could even have a few tropical tornadoes form. You need to stay Weather Aware Sunday night. High temperatures will be in the upper 80s to lower 90s.
Next Week Outlook: We start the week with a weakening inland Ida. Heavy rain and some tornadoes are expected on Monday from the rain bands. High temperatures will be in the mid 80s. More heavy rain bands and tornadoes are expected Monday night. The heavy rain and tornado threat continues into Tuesday with highs in the 80s. Ida will finally be moving away from Alabama on Wednesday. The threat for rain will go down with only scattered showers. Then Thursday and Friday will become hotter and drier. Only a slight chance for showers/storms is expected. High temperatures climb back into the 90s.
Tracking The Tropics: Hurricane Ida continues to get stronger as it moves over western Cuba. The low terrain will not impact the strength of the hurricane. It will be in the SE Gulf of Mexico on Saturday morning and quickly become a Category 2 hurricane. Ida will rapidly intensify into a Category 4 hurricane by Sunday morning as it moves over deep warm water and does not have to battle any wind shear.
Ida is expected to make landfall on SE Louisiana Sunday afternoon/evening Cocodrie, LA as a Category 4 hurricane with winds of at least 140 mph. There is a chance it could be even stronger. Ironically, this is the same day, August 29th, when Hurricane Katrina and Hurricane Isaac made landfall across SE Louisiana.
Once it moves inland Sunday night it will quickly weaken as it tracks over Baton Rouge. Then it turns north and moves up the Mississippi River. It will turn NE on Monday and track toward Tupelo as a tropical depression, and then Nashville on Tuesday as a remnant low.
Alabama Impacts: We will have heavy rain starting to move into central Alabama on Sunday late-afternoon and it will continue through Tuesday. Forecast rain totals will be around 2-7″+, and this will lead to some flash flooding. Keep a close eye on streams, creeks and rivers.
Tornadoes will also be threat starting Sunday night and lasting through Tuesday midday. Central Alabama will be in the “sweet spot” to get tornadoes, or in the NE quadrant of the hurricane. These tornadoes are usually brief, but they can cause plenty of damage.
Winds will be sustained around 20-40 mph with higher gusts across the Birmingham area. The higher winds will be over western Alabama, or closer to the storm.
Be prepared for some flooding, tornadoes and power outages across central Alabama starting next Monday morning.
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