A Slight Chance of Storms

Tuesday, March 22nd 2011, 5:47 am
By: News On 6

9:30 AM Update:

A few scattered showers and storms have formed this morning across north Texas and southern OK as strong upper air energy zooms across the region.  The atmosphere remains capped to surface formation.  This means morning showers or storms that form should be elevated in nature with very little severe threat.  SPC objective analysis pages indicated very little convective energy this morning across eastern OK.  This may change later today, especially for the northeastern part of the state.

A few of these showers and storms may approach the Tulsa area during the noon hour.

HRRR model solutions point toward possible isolated strong to severe storm formation around 4pm today across the Pawnee-Pawhuska area.  The window for storm formation would be from 4pm to 8pm along and north of the highway 412 corridor. If a storm forms during this time period, it would more than likely be severe. 


 The fire danger issues are very real today, more so across central and western OK where low humidity and strong winds will be problematic by early afternoon.  The fire danger remains elevated in Tulsa and a Fire Weather Watch will be posted for this afternoon and early evening.

I have left the morning post intact:

From 4:15AM:

The dry line (the feature separating moist air and dry air) will be moving across the state today as a strong upper level system moves into the central plains.

 The dry line is a common feature in the spring and early summer and can produce thunderstorms under certain circumstances.


The air aloft is expected to be very warm today and will cap the atmosphere.  The cap will not allow upward vertical development for most of the day, but the cap may weaken later this afternoon allowing for thunderstorm development.  Another negative for wide spread thunderstorm development today will be a veering surface and mid level wind.  This means our winds will be turning from the south to the southwest as the dry line advances.  This will limit convergence along the dry line.  If the storms develop, severe weather is likely.  The main threats will be hail and damaging wind.  Temperatures today will be in the upper 70s and lower 80s with mostly cloudy conditions.  Some sun breaks are possible later this afternoon.  The dry air west of the dry line will result in explosive fire growth development and Red Flag Warning criteria will be met today to our west. 

The Tulsa metro is expected to remain east of the dry line until early evening.  A fire weather watch has been posted for the metro. 

 The actual cold front associated with this system will not pass the area until Wednesday morning around 9am to 10am and will bring dry and mild air to the region through Thursday afternoon. 


Another short wave will be approaching Thursday night into Friday morning with a slight chance of showers and storms across NE Ok and SE Kansas.  These are not expected to be severe.

 The data continues to offer widely varying solutions for our weekend.  Both sets of data support a slight chance of showers or storms Saturday morning with north winds arriving early Saturday.  This will keep the afternoon highs in the upper 60s.


Sunday into early next week remains highly speculative and the confidence level for this portion of the forecast is very low.  We do anticipate a storm system arriving either Sunday or Monday bringing a chance of rain, thunderstorm activity, and even some colder air!  Stay tuned!




I want to encourage you to check out the Storm Prediction Center web site.




Take some time during the next few days to explore this site if you haven't done so already.  You'll find most "products" to be easily identified.  Some of the meso analysis page sectors will offer challenges, but this is a great way to learn more about the convective process. 


SPC forecasters don't issue warnings.  They issue watches.  Local national weather service offices are responsible for warnings among many other responsibilities.  The partnership between SPC-NWS and local broadcasters such as Newson6 is critical in the forecast and warning process.  We are proud to have such a good working relationship with these agencies and their dedicated employees.