Winter Weather Potential

A winter weather advisory has been issued for all of the News 5 area. The advisory began at noon and will last until 6 am tomorrow morning. For what the models are saying go to the bottom of this article.

Why?

Another cold front will usher in frigid air late afternoon. The front brings a chance for a wintry mix of rain and sleet, plus the chance of light snow along with it. 

How much?

While any significant accumulation is unlikely. If you are to see snow, most accumulations would be a half inch or less. However, there might be a few locations where we could see some higher amounts.

What time?

Most forecast models are hinting at isolated showers during the afternoon, but we could see a mix of rain and sleet during the late afternoon in the northwestern half of our area along with SE Mississippi. Any precipitation will move from west to east and the later it gets the more likely we will see some light snow showers along and north of the I-10 corridor. Areas south will most likely experience a wintry mix or even just rain.

How cold? 

A hard freeze warning will go into effect late tonight and last into 8am tomorrow. Areas covered include counties along and west of I-65. This means temperatures will fall into the teens and lower 20s. It will feel even colder as winds will be strong out of the north. There's also a wind chill advisory for tonight as wind chill values will likely be in the teens. 

What are the models saying?

Let's start with most models have been hinting at the chance of snow and now some that haven't are showing an outside chance. The big takeaway before the breakdown is, even for models that do show snow, they aren't showing a lot. If there are any spots that see accumulations they will likely be less than an inch. There is an outside chance a couple of local areas pick up more, but again, we are not expecting a lot of snow. The areas most likely to pick up snow would be areas north of I-10.

Starting with one of the more known models, the GFS, yesterday it showed no snow for the Gulf Coast. Today it's been hinting at the potential. Snow might start in the northwestern half of the area by mid to late afternoon and shows snow and a wintry mix making to most areas west of I-65 before things dry up. The European has been a little more consistent showing a light band moving from west to east across our area. For areas north of the coast it has shown the potential for light snow and along the coast a wintry mix. In this scenario any wintry weather wouldn't begin until around sunset and would be done before daybreak Wednesday.

Now for a couple of the shorter range and higher resolution. Higher resolution doesn't always mean better though. The RPM shows rain beginning tomorrow afternoon, but as we get colder from the cold front we see a changeover to sleet during the afternoon. In this situation light snow may be possible as early as sunset. This forecast model has showed scattered snow showers moving from west to east starting at 5 pm lasting until just after midnight. Any snow would be north of I-10 and a mix is possible along the I-10 corridor while the coast just sees rain.

The last model we will discuss is the NAM. This shows us staying dry though the daytime. Snow could start in the northwestern half of the area by 8 PM. Unlike the rest of the models the NAM shows the potential of snow and sleet lasting until mid morning tomorrow. In this situation just about everyone north of I-10 would see at least flurries and we could see a mix of sleet and rain all the way down to the coast. 

Again, these are just forecast models and not actual forecasts. 

The takeaways from this should be if you live north of I-10 you have the chance of seeing some light snow and a winter mix. If you live along the coast rain and a mix is the most likely situation. The chance of any precipitation in general isn't very high. With rain, sleet, and snow- travel tonight might be treacherous. Avoid travel if possible. This is all subject to change so make sure you stay tuned. 

 


Mobile County

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Northwest Florida