6:30 Update: It's looking like the clouds have won the war. Just a few showers and s torms are expected tonight. Severe weather threat appears to be over.
3:45 PM update: First storms are now popping out near Bowling Green. Nothing severe yet. Also the Weather Service's Radar in Jackson is operational again.
Severe Weather Breakdown:
Good Monday my friends, I hope you are excited and pumped up for the big UK game tonight! I really hope the Cats can bring number 9 back to the Bluegrass, wouldn't that be an amazing turn around for this season?
However a different kind of season is upon us, severe weather season, and today we have the chance of a little severe weather. Now let me put a big disclaimer in this post, severe weather today IS NOT A GUARANTEE. However the chances are high enough that we have declared a WYMT Severe Weather Alert Day.
Here's the breakdown, a very strong area of low pressure will be passing through the Ohio Valley this afternoon with a cold front. This low has incredibly strong winds about a mile up in the atmosphere, gusting to around 60-80 miles per hour. Winds at about 3 miles up are up 100-120 miles per hour. This is very strong wind, and it doesn't take a lot of mixing of the atmosphere for some of that wind to come down to the surface. Even without storms today winds will likely gust 30-40 miles per hour.
Now here's the big question about does this become a full fledged severe weather event, or is it just some gusty wind driven thunderstorms... do we see some sunshine this afternoon? Check out the latest visible satellite image:
If we start seeing those clouds thin out and we get some sunshine, that will likely prime the atmosphere enough for some thunderstorms to develop. Because the winds in the atmosphere are so strong, any thunderstorm could tap into those winds and bring them down to the surface via their downdrafts. Also because this area of low pressure is so strong, this is quite a bit of rotation in the atmosphere. Put the two together, and you have the recipe for the potential of a few quick spin up style tornadoes.
You can track the thunderstorms as they develop on the radar below.
We do have another problem today, the National Weather Service at Jackson's Radar is down for repairs today. While other radars in the area will cover us, that is the best radar for looking at storms in Eastern KY.
The HRRR model is one I really like to use for tracking potential of severe weather. Here's what it's future radar is showing for this evening's storms.
The good news is that everything should be out of here by 9:00 PM and the start of the UK game, which you can catch here on WYMT. As I said earlier, it all depends on how much sunshine we get. Keep it with WYMT throughout the day for updates.