Sunday afternoon, May 29 , 2016
Forecaster: Ryan Stinnett
Saturday provided a bit of relief from our recent heat and dryness with a few morning showers and some clouds to blunt the heat early thanks to a passing upper level disturbance. Despite the clouds' best efforts, afternoon sunshine and general warmth were able to push the mercury into the middle and upper 80s. Highs included 86F in Birmingham and 88F in Tuscaloosa, Calera and Anniston.
MY BONNIE: Tropical Storm Bonnie moved onshore early this morning just east of Charleston SC and quickly weakened to tropical depression status. Intense rainfall fell on the southwestern side of the cyclone, dumping over 7 inches on parts of Jasper County, SC, blocking I-95 near Ridgeland. The interstate is still closed as I write this. The rip current threat is high all the way from the East Coast of Florida to the Outer Banks of North Carolina. One person is still missing and unaccounted for. The remnants of Bonnie will loop slowly north and then east across South Carolina before accelerating to the northeast over coastal North Carolina. The System should emerge back into the Atlantic Wednesday night. Over the next couple of days, tropical moisture will overspread the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast, giving those areas a wet Memorial Day. 1-3 inch rainfall amounts will be common from North Carolina to Connecticut, including the New York City area.
FOR YOUR SUNDAY: Northwesterly flow on the back side of Bonnie is dragging some drier air into Alabama this afternoon. There may be enough moisture southeast of I-59 to trigger a couple of thunderstorms this afternoon, but they will be isolated at best. With increased sunshine,, temperatures were pushing through the 80s early this afternoon. Highs will be clustered around 90F this afternoon.
MONDAY: Pressures will begin to drop over Alabama tomorrow as a trough begins to develop over the eastern United States. A weak cold front will approach from the north, and this could trigger widely scattered showers and thunderstorms. Tomorrow's high will be a degree or two warmer than those of today.
TUESDAY/WEDNESDAY: Isolated showers and storms will occur Tuesday during the afternoon and evening hours. Highs will again be near 90F. Lows will be in the upper 60s.
LATE WEEK SYSTEM: Another trough will slowly come eastward out of the Plains states on Wednesday, enhancing showers and thunderstorm chances Wednesday and Thursday afternoon and evening. Friday looks like it will feature the best chance of rain for Alabama as another front approaches. Saturday will still feature some showers and storms, with decreasing rain chances on Sunday. Weekend temperatures will trends back toward the middle 80s for highs with lows remaining in the upper 60s.
GULF COAST WEATHER: Another great week along the beautiful beaches of Alabama and Northwest Florida. Highs will be around 90F and lows will be in the lower 70s. Rain chances will be low all week, at least until Saturday, when they will increase some in advance of that front. Water temperatures are in the upper 70s. The rip current risk appears that it will be low through midweek, but pay attention to yellow flags and supervise people who cannot swim. Check out the best beach forecast available here.
DANCING WITH THE STATS: it was very hot in the Northeast yesterday. It was 94F at New York City's Central Park, which tied the record for the date. The sizzling 96F at Newark smashed the old record of 92F.
ON THIS DATE IN 1999: A father and son were both killed by lightning during a fishing trip on the Black Warrior River near Demopolis. The pair were killed as they raced back to shore in an attempt to get to safety. Follow my weather history tweets on Twitter. I am @wxhistorian at Twitter.com.
Today's Record Temperatures