Posted Saturday, August 1, 2020, 9:22 AM
Edited: 1:11 PM
An unsettled weather pattern will persist through much of the weekend as a low pressure system travels northeast into the Ohio Valley today. The system will lift a warm front through eastern Ohio this afternoon bringing likely odds for showers and thunderstorms to the Valley.
While it probably won’t rain continuously all day, scattered showers and storms will be possible at just about any location off and on today. More of a widespread rain event is expected to move in over the region later in the day and tonight.
Support for strong to severe thunderstorms this afternoon and this evening is a bit uncertain. There appears to be plenty of lift and moisture for stronger storms, but instability is somewhat questionable. Morning soundings suggest the highest instability will set up along and south of I-70. That doesn’t mean that we’re out of the woods, but it does suggest a lower threat for severe storms here in the Valley.
The Storm Prediction Center has the southern half of the area highlighted for a Slight Risk. This leads me to believe that the highest threat for severe thunderstorms will be to our south. Still, a couple of strong storms is certainly possible with damaging wind as the main threat. Hail and isolated weak tornadoes are lesser threats.
The overall threat for severe storms late today will depend greatly on the amount of clearing we manage to attain during the morning and early afternoon. Cloud cover will limit the severe threat. Any appreciable sunshine would allow instability to increase leading to better odds of strong storms late in the afternoon and this evening.
The other concern is that of heavy rainfall. There will be ample moisture available for storms today and tonight to work with. Any cells that move through will be able to tap into this moisture and become an efficient rainmaker capable of heavy downpours. They should move through quickly enough to avoid any widespread water issues but some locations could have minor flooding issues.
Timing will be a bit different today. This isn’t a once and done event. Storms will be scattered about all day and into tonight and any one individual storm cell could get a little feisty. The highest odds will be late this afternoon – say after 3/4 PM – and tonight. It also means that there will be some dry time as well. Have a reliable way to get warnings.
Otherwise, it will turn a bit muggy this afternoon as dew points increase to the low-70s behind that warm front. Chances for showers and storms will decrease overnight but we’ll see those odds increase again through the day Sunday.
Be weather aware today. (Never trust a warm front). Updates will be posted here as needed. Real-time updates are also available on Twitter (@tuscwx).