Monday, February 4, 2008

Tornado Outbreak Possible on Tuesday

The large upper level storm system has slowed a bit and is located over the southern rockies as of now. Strong moisture advection is transporting dewpoints in the low 60's F up thru Louisiana, se Oklahoma, Arkansas, & Mississipi. A strong cold front will push through the region tomorrow setting off possibly numerous rounds of strong thunderstorms. The WRF model shows somewhat of a sfc low along the front in Arkansas between 18z-00z likely enhancing the sfc winds to back to the southeast just a bit. Atop this, SSW winds at 850mb over 45kts and SW winds at 500mb over 75kts, will result in good shear profiles throughout the entire warm sector. Low-level flow is nice with storm relative helicity values over 200 m^2/s^2 over ne Arkansas into western Tenn. Instability may be an issue but 500-1000j/kg CAPE values should be adequate for this time of year in the given location. All the ingredients are there for a fairly substantial outbreak of severe weather including tornadoes but that will likely depend on small-scale features that will be seen better tomorrow morning. As for a chase tomorrow, conditions will be extremely challenging with storm motions around 50kts and the terrain over much of the warm sector. However, with the storm system looking to be slowing down a bit, it leaves a good chance that supercells could develop over eastern and northeastern Arkansas which is decent chase terrain with relatively flat land and a decent road network. I will look at things closely tomorrow morning and make a decision. It will likely be an early show and I could see tornado watches issued before noon with little to no cap in place. Stay Tuned...

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