By Jim Stefkovich, Meteorologist, Alabama Emergency Management Agency
CLANTON – Monday, 8 am August 8, 2022
Thankfully, it has a quiet start to the Hurricane Season with only three named storms to date. The last named storm occurred on July 2nd , as Tropical Storm Colin affected the Carolinas.
However, we are now entering our climatological peak of tropical activity which runs from August – October. The National Hurricane Center’s revised outlook on August 4th indicates there is a 60% chance for an above-normal number of named storms and 30% chance of near-normal activity. There is only a 10% chance of below-normal activity.
The combination of light wind shear aloft (high wind shear disrupts storms), high sea-surface temperatures and an active west Africa Monsoon (systems moving off the African coast into the Atlantic) all indicate an active period during the next three months.
Keep in mind these forecasts do not indicate “where” storms will form or make landfall, and it only takes one storm to produce horrific consequences.
As shown in the headlined graphic, an area of showers and thunderstorms off the African coast has a 40% of tropical development, and a tropical depression could form this week. So, right on cue, we are starting to see actual systems form. Concerning this one, until a center of circulation forms, the long-range track/intensity forecast will be low confidence. Stay tuned!
To learn more about developing or reviewing your tropical action plan, go to https://www.ready.gov/hurricanes and https://www.weather.gov/wrn/hurricane-preparedness
Finally, concerning Alabama, scattered to numerous afternoon and evening thunderstorms will occur statewide today through Thursday and over the southern half of the state on Friday. Although a few storms each day could produce damaging wind gusts and/or localized flooding, organized severe weather is not forecast.