Strong to possibly severe thunderstorms expected Tuesday afternoon. Here's the latest info!
We continue to watch the potential for thunderstorms to possibly be strong to severe as we head into the afternoon hours of Tuesday. The Storm Prediction Center maintains a Level 2 of 5 risk of severe storms across a large part of southern middle and southwestern Tennessee, all of northwest Alabama, and through north Mississippi. In our viewing area, that includes all of our counties except for Maury and Marshall Counties of TN... and they are under a Level 1 of 5 risk of severe storms.
Overall, this is a pretty low-end threat, but as you well know, we have to take even these low-end severe weather threats seriously. All it takes is one storm to produce a damaging straight-line wind gust or even a lower-end type tornado to be impactful and potentially dangerous. The main concern with the storms tomorrow afternoon is that a few of them may be capable of producing 50-65 mph wind gusts. Those gusts would be high enough to cause tree and power line damage. Second to that but a lower threat, we can't rule out one or two short-lived "spin-up" type tornadoes. IF we see a tornado tomorrow, it would most likely be of the lower-end intensity variety, but even an EF0 tornado is dangerous. The problem with these spin-up small tornadoes within lines of storms is that they can sometimes spin-up so quickly that they cause damage before they show up on radar. They can often develop very shallow in thunderstorms and their rotations not extend deep enough into the storm to be detected by radar until after they have already caused damage. This makes them sometimes very hard to get tornado warnings out for. We ask that you be extra vigilant as the line of storms moves into the area tomorrow, and you be ready to seek shelter on the lowest floor away from windows very quickly as the line moves in.
We continue to go with an overall time window of Noon to 6:00 PM for the storm threat in our viewing area counties. We may see a few light showers as early as daybreak on Tuesday, but the main line of storms starts to approach from north Mississippi and west Tennessee by Noon to 1PM. It looks to move through the U.S. 43 corridor counties between 1 PM and 3PM and then move through the I-65 corridor counties of our viewing area roughly between 2PM and 4 or 5 PM. Don't take these times down to the exact for any particular time, but this gives an overall timeline of the storms as they are expected to move through. By 5 or 6PM, the storms will be over into northeast Alabama and east central Tennessee, and the severe weather threat for our viewing area will be over.
In addition to the severe storms, strong southerly gradient winds even well ahead of the storms on Tuesday look to be sustained at 20 mph or higher, and some gusts could reach 40 or 45 mph even away from storms! For this reason, the entire viewing area is under a WIND ADVISORY from 9AM to 7PM on Tuesday. As the line of storms moves through, locally heavy rainfall will also be a concern, but with rainfall amounts generally only being between 0.5 and 1.5 inches and with our dry ground lately, we don't anticipate any significant flooding or flash flooding issues outside of brief issues along roads and streets with the usual drainage problems. Anything like that, IF it happens, should be relatively short-lived.
The two best ways of receiving alerts for possible warnings tomorrow are a NOAA Weather Radio or a good smartphone weather app, like our FREE Tennessee Valley Weather App, that is specifically designed to alert you when your geolocation is within a warning area. Weather Radios still work based on whole counties, but are still the baseline for alerting you... especially during overnight events when you may be asleep (thankfully this will not be during the overnight this time). It is important to have multiple reliable ways to get warnings so that you have redundancy in case one or more systems fail. We recommend at least two methods that don't include outdoor warning sirens, but the more ways you have of hearing severe weather watches and warnings, the better. You can also get the latest information from us on our 24/7 ALL LOCAL digital weather channel, the Tennessee Valley Weather Channel. You can find that by searching Roku, FireTV, or YouTube for "Tennessee Valley Weather", by going to our website at tnvalleyweather.com, or you can find that live streaming link within our free app. Should we have a need to go live with non-stop wall to wall coverage (which we do for all tornado warnings in our viewing area), you can find radio simulcasting of our live coverage from our radio partners listed above, covering southern middle Tennessee, northwest Alabama, and far northeast Mississippi.