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A busy weather day gives way to cooler weather

/ March 4, 2019 at 12:12 AM
Four-panel radar view of a tornado-warned supercell that went through Ridgeville. No tornado has been confirmed as of this writing. Click for full resolution.

Today was a very bad weather day for a lot of people in Alabama, Georgia, and South Carolina. Fortunately, we return to much calmer conditions for Monday.

A deadly day of severe weather

It was a very, very bad weather day in parts of Alabama and Georgia. It only took the Lee County, AL tornado to exceed 2018’s death toll for all tornadoes. Storm surveys will undoubtedly shed even more light on the exact nature of the violence of these storms, which is important for the science. What’s most important right now, though, is that the people affected by these deadly storms are receiving the help they need to begin what will be a long, hard recovery process. Keep them in your thoughts tonight.

Closer to home in the Midlands and Central Savannah River Area (CSRA), there were several reports of wind damage and a possible tornado in Lexington. Storm surveys will confirm just how many tornadoes may have taken place as supercells interacted with a warm frontal boundary draped right over the midsection of the state.

Charleston, fortunately, seems to have been spared the brunt of it again. There was a tornado warning for a tight rotation that came through Ridgeville, but there are no reports of any damage as of yet. Interestingly, the main impacts ended up being hail reports in parts of Summerville and Goose Creek.

We will see what the final outcome is as storm reports trickle in over the next day or so. But, by all indications, we once again dodged a really nasty bullet. These storms were capable of doing a lot of damage when the environment allowed for it. I suspect cloud cover and a cooler marine layer helped to keep the worst weather at bay, and thank goodness for that.

If you have reports of wind damage or hail, please, please pass them along to the National Weather Service. I’ll be happy to take your report and pass it along as well — just shoot me a DM on Twitter.

A cooler Monday

A cold front will swing through early Monday. In doing so, cooler air will begin to rush in during the day, keeping temperatures right around 60° in the afternoon — much cooler than we have seen in the previous week and several degrees below normal for this time of year. Cloud cover will break up a bit, and we should end up getting a reasonable amount of sunshine in the afternoon.

Possible frost and freeze Wednesday and Thursday

A reinforcing shot of cold air will come through overnight Monday, bringing with it a slight chance of showers overnight. The resulting reinforcement of cooler and drier air will allow temperatures to fall into frost and freeze territory on Wednesday and Thursday mornings. Wednesday looks downright cold in general, as highs will struggle to recover to 50° in the face of strong cold high pressure building into the area.

If you’ve got sensitive plants, be thinking about how you’re going to protect them from frost and freeze for mid-week.

Temperatures will rebound to the upper 60s by Friday and the low to mid-70s by the weekend, but that comes with the risk of isolated to scattered showers once again. Overall, though, it will be nice to get a few days of generally calm (if not chilly) weather — beats the heck out of days like today, that’s for sure.