Saturday saw a significant tornado outbreak across parts of Tennessee and southern Kentucky. One supercell storm produced a series of tornadoes across Stewart and Montgomery Counties in Tennessee into Todd County, Kentucky where it finally weakened near Bowling Green. Tornado damage was reported near Indian Mound, TN, near Woodlawn TN, and across northern portions of Clarksville, TN, as well as near Guthrie, KY. There were three fatalities in Clarksville, Tennessee. Another supercell moved along just north of I-40 and across the northern portions of Metro Nashville. Three fatalities were reported in the Madison community. The storms weakened after sunset as instability values dropped.
BUT THEY MADE A COMEBACK ACROSS CENTRAL ALABAMA: As warm, moist air continued to push into Central Alabama during the late evening, the storms were able to intensify across West central Alabama. They started to really fire up over Tuscaloosa County, and winds gusted to 48 mph at the Tuscaloosa Airport. The wind velocities really ramped up and we began to get lots of reports of trees down across western, and southern Jefferson County as the storms moved across the Birmingham Metro. Winds gusted to 58 mph at the Birmingham Shuttlesworth Airport. The reports of trees downed in Vestavia, Hoover, and Mountain Brook were too numerous to count or keep up with. At one point over 36,000 Alabama Power customers were without power. Numerous roads were blocked. Tornado watches remained in effect all the way to 8 a.m. CST Sunday morning ahead of the main line of storms.
A CHILLY BLISTERY SUNDAY: Temperatures have fallen into the 40s in areas northwest of I-59 this morning and range upwards through the 50s to the southeast. A few showers continue across the area this morning, but they are beginning to diminish from the northwest. They should be mostly south of I-59 by 11 a.m. and out of the Central part of the state by 5 p.m. Clearing will begin working in from the northwest during the morning hours, with most areas northwest of I-59 seeing sun by late morning to early afternoon with clearing working its way gradually southeastward into the afternoon. Temperatures will remain steady or fall slowly through the day, with most folks in the 40s by mid-afternoon. A brisk northwest wind will make it feel even colder. Those winds will average 12-18 mph with some gusts to 25-27 mph. Those winds will diminish during the evening and with mostly clear skies overnight, readings Monday morning range between 26-32 at most locations, except the normally colder spots. You know who you are.
CHILLY, DRY WEEK AHEAD: The work week will feature cool and dry conditions for Monday through Thursday, with moderating temperatures as we go through the week. Highs will go from near 51F on average Monday, to 56F on Tuesday, 57F on Wednesday and Thursday. Lows will go from 29F Monday morning, to 30F Tuesday morning, 34F Wednesday, 39F Thursday, and 37F Friday.
WEEKEND OUTLOOK: High pressure over the Mid-Atlantic will retain a tenuous hold on North and Central Alabama weather into the weekend. But this will allow a storm track over the northern Gulf of Mexico and a passing disturbance could trigger a few showers over southern Alabama on Friday. A second stronger disturbance will trigger more widespread rain over South Alabama by Saturday night into Sunday.
VOODOO TERRITORY: Hey! We can almost see Christmas! Looks like much of the week two period is dry in Alabama and the Deep South, with no real wet weather systems perhaps until the night of the 25th, Christmas night. Looks like an easterly wedge could bring cool and kinda cloudy conditions for the 76 Birmingham Bowl on Saturday the 23rd, but that is a long way off.
BEACHCAST: Rain and storms along the beautiful beaches of Alabama and Northwest Florida today, but drier and cooler weather will prevail into Wednesday, when those southern storm track system bring a chance of rain each day into the weekend. 70s today with a high rip current risk. 60s Monday, 50s Tuesday and Wednesday. Low 60s Thursday, Friday and Saturday. Lows will be in the 40s most of the week. Water temperatures are in the lower 60s. A high rip current risk will return by midweek.
DANCING WITH THE STATS: Tuscaloosa checked in with a record high of 78F, breaking the old record for the date by 2 degrees. Several other southern stations recorded record highs for the date, including 84F at Lafayette, Louisiana and Mobile, which ties its record high for the date with a reading of 80F.
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WEATHERBRAINS: Join the gang tomorrow night when we will be chatting with two folks from TORRO, the Tornado and Storm Research Organisation. Notice the British spelling because it is an organization out of the United Kingdom dedicated to studying severe weather in Britain and Ireland. Check out the show at www.WeatherBrains.com or anywhere you get your podcasts. You can watch the show live on our new YouTube channel for the show.You will be able to see the show on the James Spann 24×7 weather channel on cable or directly over the air on the dot 2 feed.
ON THIS DATE IN 1984: It was 4:30 p.m. on a darkening, cloudy December afternoon in Claxton, Georgia. Rain was threatening. A man named Don Richardson stepped outside his mobile home. He heard a loud whistling noise and a loud bang. Less than fifty yards from where he was standing, a mailbox was knocked the ground. A 4 inch by 4 inch by 3 inch thick meteorite that weighed 3.2 pounds had struck the mailbox! Other nearby observers saw a fireball and others heard a sonic boom. Of course, the other thing that Claxton is famous for are those classic fruit cakes. Maybe the meteorite had heard all about them and wanted to check them out! Follow my weather history tweets on Twitter. I am @wxhistorian at Twitter.com.
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