Severe Storms Might Not Be Only Weekend Threat

By: METEOROLOGIST MARK HENDERSON
By: METEOROLOGIST MARK HENDERSON

Confidence is rising with regards to the evolution of a windy, wet storm to affect us into the coming weekend! Little has changed regarding our threat for severe weather, as we remain outlooked for the possibility of strong to severe thunderstorms in the Saturday afternoon/evening timeframe.

We're also growing more and more confident in the fact that locally heavy rains could occur! In examining five separate computer forecast model solutions for the upcoming storm, no model paints less than this morning's GFS run's 0.98" rainfall forecast here! The fact that there's such strong agreement with all models suggesting upwards of an inch of rain is to fall gives forecasters a higher level of confidence in these model forecasts being accurate!

As we've mentioned so many times, both here and on the air, we find it wise to ensemble rainfall, and in the winter months, snowfall forecasts, rather than to accept one singular model's forecast tally. I've found in my 11 years as a forecaster that these ensembles prove to be more reflective of the actual tally more often than not!

In this case, our average of the five model solutions examined yields a rainfall estimate of 1.44" here in the Stateline for this upcoming event, a healthy figure indeed! Since rain tends not to fall homogeneously, especially in thunderstorms, we'll often build a cushion of ~0.25" on either side of the ensemble to give a more representative range of the forecast rainfall. With that line of thinking, it's prudent to expect rainfall amounts to generally fall between 1.19" and 1.69" on Saturday/Saturday night!

It's certainly not the best of timing, considering it's the weekend, though given the severity of the ongoing drought, this rain will be tremendously beneficial!


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