Latest on storms in Alabama - ABC 33/40 - Birmingham News, Weather, Sports

Latest on storms in Alabama (Updated)

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Here is the latest updates on the storms in Alabama from the ABC 33/40 Weather Blog (StormAlert Radar at bottom):

Update 2:22 a.m.

Rain and thunderstorms continue to push through the I-59 corridor at this hour, with rain, lightning and some gusty winds, but they are not severe. They are not expected to become severe.

The heaviest rain extends from the Tuscaloosa area northeastward to near Lake View.

Sumter County storm is strong, but not severe.

Dangerous storm pushing into Choctaw County is passing south of Butler. Severe thunderstorm warning for Choctaw County now.

I don't expect any severe weather in the ABC 33/40 viewing area. The storm in Choctaw could produce some damage, but it is pushing east southeast toward southern Marenego and Clarke Counties.

This will be the last update of the night, unless the directional changes.

Update 2:08 a.m.

Storm south of Meridian has a long history of producing tornado damage. It is moving into Choctaw County, which is out of our coverage area and the NWS Birmingham area of responsibility.

The storm north of Meridian has a tornado warning on it as well. It is moving southeast and will impact Sumter County shortly, including Livingston, York and Cuba. It remains to be seen if NWS Birmingham will issue a warning. If they do, it probably won't be a tornado warnings. This storm will affect southern Greene and extreme southern Hale Counties as well.

NWS Choosing to go significant weather alert on Sumter, instead of severe thunderstorm warning. This is great sign as storms continue to weaken when they move into West Central Alabama.

Across the rest of Central Alabama, a 40 mile wide band of moderate to heavy showers and storms is in the I-59 corridor. Occasional lightning, moderate to heavy rain, some gusty winds will be the main impacts. These storms are not severe and are not expected to become severe.

Update 1:33 a.m.

Traffic stoppage being reported on I-20 west of Newton. Another sign that major tornado may have passed there.

Update 1:20 a.m.

The NWS Jackson has issued a severe thunderstorm warning for Noxubee County in eastern Mississippi for an intensifying storm.

The storm will push east southeast into southern Pickens, northern Sumter and Greene Counties by 1:45.

There is rotation on this storm. It probably isn't producing a tornado, but if it continues to intensify that is a possibility. High winds, hail, heavy rain and lightning are accompanying the storm.

It will pass near Pickensville, Aliceville and eventually Union.

Still tracking tornadic supercell over Newton County, MS. Pass near or just east of Newton toward Hickory and Chunky. Likely has already produced one tornado and another may be imminent. Scott County Sheriff's Office reports they are in emergency with significant damage.


Update 10-18-12 12:05 a.m.

The good news is that the storms are weaker over eastern Mississippi and Northwest Alabama.

The moisture influx just hasn't been impressive so far, so the storms don't have the same fuel they had earlier, at least over North Central Mississippi.

The NWS is holding off on issuing a watch for now.

There are no warnings for the activity coming into Marion and Lamar Counties. The NWS choosing to issue significant weather alerts instead.

We will be watching for trouble over parts of West Central Alabama around Pickens, Sumter, Hale, Marengo and Greene Counties. Instability will be a bit better there. So, we are not out of the woods yet.

Tonight is a situation where the wind shear is so strong that it is overwhelming the updrafts. As the storms have outrun the instability, they are getting ripped apart by the strong winds.

Update 10:51 p.m.

Our storms over Mississippi are pushing east very quickly now, moving at 45 mph.

The first storms will arrive in the following counties at the following times:

Franklin County (Red Bay): 11:30 p.m.
Marion County (Hamilton): Midnight
Lamar County (Vernon): 12:15 a.m.
Pickens County (Carrollton): 1:00 a.m. .

The storms should reach Birmingham between 2 and 3 a.m. and Tuscaloosa between 1:30 and 2:30 a.m.

Severe thunderstorm warnings do come up to the border of Northwest Alabama now.

At 10:13 p.m.:

The number of tornado warnings has decreased, with more severe thunderstorm warnings being issued. In fact, there is only one tornado warning now in Mississippi. The tornado threat is lessening a bit as the storms become linear. Certainly can't rule out tornadoes in the line of storms, but damaging winds will be the main threat. And the line should continue to weaken as it approaches I-65 later tonight.

A severe thunderstorm watch has been issued for Northwest Alabama including Franklin, Lauderdale and Colbert Counties. Further south, expect a watch later for western Alabama. It remains to be seen whether it will be a tornado or severe thunderstorm watch. Probably a tornado watch.

The storms are starting to congeal into a squall line, as expected over Mississippi. They will progress east with a threat of damaging winds and isolated tornadoes. The airmass over western Alabama will become more unstable over the next couple of hours as a strong low level jet pumps warm, moist air northward. This will keep the severe threat going into West Alabama.

Areas west of I-59 will see the storms between 1 a.m. and 4 a.m. The storms should slowly weaken as they push southeast of I-59.

Wind damage at Senatobia MS at 9:30 and at Tunica at 9:30 p.m. also. No recent reports of tornadoes although several tornado warnings are in effect.

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