FIRST ALERT: Outer bands to build in across our area starting tomorrow morning
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - FIRST ALERT HURRICANE IDA 8PM UPDATE: Hurricane Ida made landfall at 11:55 AM near Port Fourchon, Louisiana with 150 mph winds. Ida will continue to move further inland overnight and bring damaging winds, storm surge at the coast where the flow is onshore, and flash flooding. It will gradually weaken while moving slowly to the northwest and be a category 1 hurricane by the time it gets to Baton Rouge around midnight. By Monday around 1pm, Ida will be a tropical storm and located across west central Mississippi. Tuesday, it will track across northern Mississippi in the morning and central Tennessee around 1PM as an area of low pressure and then impact New York to Boston late week and regain some strength once is moves over open waters again. Keep up with the latest strength and movement of Ida each hour via the WBRC First Alert Weather App. The next forecast track and strength update is released by the National Hurricane Center at 10PM
FIRST ALERT WEATHER DAY MONDAY AND TUESDAY: We will remain on the right front quadrant of Ida which means we will see rounds of rain, wind, and the potential for isolated tornadoes. The threat ramps up Monday morning and could peak Monday night into Tuesday morning. Monday afternoon could present us with outer squalls that could produce very heavy rainfall, potential flash flooding, and the threat for isolated tornadoes. Tornadoes that form in tropical systems usually only last for a short period of time and cycle quickly. Take all warnings seriously Monday and Tuesday. Wind speeds Monday will be around 10-15 mph with gusts near 25 mph. Some of the outer rain bands could produce wind gusts up to 40 mph. Threat will begin in west Alabama and spread northwards over time. I think the main batch of rain and wind will likely occur Monday night into Tuesday morning. Sustained winds of 15-25 mph will be possible with wind gusts up to 40 mph is possible as the bands of rain move through Central Alabama. We could see isolated wind gusts up to 50 mph in far west Alabama since they will be closer to the center of circulation of Ida. Monday night will be very wet. I would avoid driving on the roads. We will hold on to an isolated tornado threat during the overnight hours. Make sure you have multiple ways to receive warnings overnight. A NOAA Weather Radio is highly recommended as it can wake you up while sleeping and of course the WBRC First Alert Weather App.
The First Alert Weather Day continues through the first half of Tuesday as Ida continues to weaken and stays to our north in parts of Tennessee. Based on the latest future radar data, the worst of the storms may exit east of the state by noon.
Southwest counties after 4AM Monday and lasting through 7AM Tuesday. I-65 and west will see the activity between 9AM Monday and 10AM Tuesday. East of I-65 deal with the outer bands between 4PM Monday and 2PM Tuesday.
West Alabama will clearly see the highest rainfall totals from Ida. Rainfall projections indicate totals of 2-5″ is likely with some spots receiving over 5 inches of rainfall. Areas along I-65 and points to the east could still record a few inches of rain. A flash flood watch has been issued for areas along and west of I-65 starting Monday and ending Tuesday evening. It includes the cities of Cullman, Birmingham, Alabaster, Tuscaloosa, Jasper, and Hamilton. If heavy rain bands set up, we could see even higher totals than that. We’ve seen so much rain this summer that flash flooding can’t be ruled out. Remember to never drive through flooded areas. Turn around, don’t drown.
Wind Advisory 10AM Monday - 7PM Tuesday for all of central Alabama. Winds will be sustained at 15-20 mph but could gust up to 40 mph. Winds that strong can knock down tree limbs and cause a few power outages.
Most of the energy from Ida will move away from us on Wednesday giving us a small chance for lingering showers and storms. We will likely start Wednesday off cloudy with temperatures in the upper 60s. Cloud cover should slowly decrease throughout the day with highs in the mid 80s. It looks like we will end the week with much more refreshing air and lows could drop into the upper 50s and lower 60s. Labor Day Weekend looks superb as of now!
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Jill Gilardi WBRC First Alert Certified Meteorologist
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