This is a little small but the area in red is the “moderate risk” of severe weather for Thursday. It is very unusual for the SPC to issue such an area 72 hours in advance. This came out early Tuesday morning. In my mind, its too soon. There are a number of things that need to come together for this event to unfold in the Ohio Valley. Granted, the area outlined is from our area along the Ohio River and up toward the Northwest. This would coincide with what the data suggests and with our area on the fringe typically indicates the possible not probable range. I would agree with that and the idea that northwest of us is more likely a target is good. But to make such a claim 72 hours in advance is, in my view, really pushing the area where they may get in trouble because there are so many variables at play.
Having said all of that…another school of thought is that, since the SPC typically doesn’t do this at 72 hours, confidence must be high. And I will tell you, the data is pretty consistent in creating very strong wind dynamics. That will happen in all likelihood. My guess is that is why they put this out this soon just to get everyone’s attention. The thing is as far as we are concerned, there are many ingredients that need to come together to create a tornadic situation and that is very far from conclusive at this time. Perhaps it will be more so tomorrow. However, its probably a fair bet we will get some strong storms in the way of strong winds late Thursday. The later in the night it is, the lower the prospects. A few hours either way could make a lot of difference.
So, my advice is what it was yesterday….don’t head for the cellar just yet. Keep in tune to Newschannel 32 and we’ll help separate fact from fiction and I’ll certainly let you know if its something I would be very concerned about. Remember, I’m married now and a home owner so these things are just as important to me as it is to you. For now, its certainly worth being interested and informed about, but not worth selling the ranch and moving to Australia. Possible, not probable for tornadic activity and much more likely for strong storms with strong winds. Thursday is my normal day off but as of now I am operating under the assumption that I will be in to work on that evening. We’ll see how it shows itself tomorrow.