Each year we receive dozens of comments and messages asking why our forecast is different than another TV station, the National Weather Service, a website, or even a mobile app. This comes up the most during the winter season when we make our snowfall maps. After all, if we're so good at predicting weather shouldn't all the forecasts available be the same? The frustration is understandable. You want a straight answer!
The fact of the matter is that forecasts, no matter where they come from, will always be a little bit different when you compare them. Forecasts from TV stations, like ours, are usually made by a human meteorologist. As meteorologists, we each look at a wide range of data and apply a slightly different forecasting technique to it. This causes temperatures, precipitation amounts, and timing to differ a bit among our forecasts. The trick here is to have the right forecasting technique and dedication to accuracy so that you're able to edge out other forecasts. We've had this at the heart of our department for years and have been fortunate enough to become WeatheRate's most accurate forecast in Louisville.
You'll also see sometimes that forecasts from the same TV station and even the National Weather Service will vary over the course of a day. That's normal. New data is constantly coming in and we adjust accordingly to ensure that you're getting our best guess.
But what about forecasts you see on major nationally-run weather websites and apps? Those forecasts usually aren't made the old-fashioned way by human meteorologists. Most of the time those forecasts come straight from computer models, sometimes with a little bit of help by a human forecaster who adjusts those numbers in certain regions to correct for biases and other issues. In most cases human-made forecasts are not only different, but more accurate than these computer-generated ones. Meteorologists can more easily correct for the issues that models have and generally have a better handle on recognizing similar weather patterns from the past.
This is why we always tell you to download our WAVE 3 Weather app. The forecast shown there comes from us, the meteorologists, not a computer model or algorithm. We type in our forecast by hand for the app to ensure you have the most accurate outlook. Which would you rather have a forecast made by a machine or an experienced meteorologist?
This winter you'll see the different snowfall forecast maps floating around TV, social media, and online. And once again they'll all look a bit different. Don't fret! Always remember that we're here sweating out the details so that you don't have to. Your local meteorologists live and work where you do and the weather affects us just as much. We take pride in what we do and realize that we can't all agree on every little thing in our forecasts. What we can agree on is that you depend on us and that pushes us to do our job to the best of our ability every day.
This is a YouTube video that is all over social media this morning. This was shot from inside one of the campers at Cherrystone Campground in far eastern Virginia.
2 now dead. 20 injures In the video you can hear the softball size hail.
Warning: this video can be upsetting to watch knowing what is happening nearby.
Still a risk for a brief downpour during this period. The dry air is sloooowly working its way in tonight. So it would not take much to create a brief shower. Most areas---will miss out yet again.
Speaking of missing out---here is where rain fell over the past 12 hours. Some areas pick up well over 2"of rain. And as feared, some not a drop.
It still appears will we experience sunshine both days with highs mainly in the low 80s Thursday and mid 80s Friday.
EARLY SATURDAY MORNING-MONDAY MORNING
This will be a period that needs more fine-tuning. We have 2 vort maxes (pieces of energy) that will pass through that could lead to thunderstorms.
The first one early Saturday morning looks to fade as it approaches our area. The wind fields are stronger to our north on Saturday----so storm chances still look to remain low at this time.
Late Saturday night/Sunday...another lobe of energy moves through. And depending on timing...instability could lead to a more organized threat for high winds. That will be something to watch as we get closer.
The well-advertised cool down kicks in on Monday.
I will dive more into the weekend setup and August thoughts coming up tomorrow evening.
Topics to discuss:
- storms toward morning?
- Wednesday's storms
- weekend storm risk
- cooler next week
- Autumn Outlook
Latest run of the short-range models is trying to hint that storms to our north later tonight will help ignite storms closer to home as we approach sunrise.
That is possible...but so far, the storms to the north have been struggling. So we will just trend this overnight. Make sure to check the weather when you wake up as morning storms remains unsure at this point.
Not much has changed since last night. Wind fields remain with a weak look...with instability the main driving factor for any strong storm potential.
With the morning risk for shower/storms around...that will only add more doubt to how unstable we will become later in the day.
At this point, the risk is still there for storms to pop around midday into the afternoon.
The more sun we pick up late morning/midday...the more these storms will have to work with. It will be the strongest ones that will produce the very intense lightning and tropical downpours. A few down-burst winds are possible with the risk for some of these storms to certainly exceed 40,000 ft in height. Those events are very hard to predict in advance, so we will just have to watch the radar carefully.
So while a warning or two is possible, widespread severe storms are not expected.
SPC keeps us in the 5% severe risk which is below SLIGHT RISK level. That makes sense given the wind fields aloft.
We will have eye on the radar all day---so we will keep you posted with updates.
I need to stress...there will be some of you that will not even get a DROP OF RAIN out of this tomorrow. The storms will be quite scattered.
Thursday and Friday look fantastic with lower humidity levels and cooler highs in the 80s.
This remains "iffy" on storm chances. I do see 2 pieces of decent wind energy that will pass through. One on Saturday and the other on Sunday.
Instability looks limited on Saturday, but we could see some strong storms pass through in the NW flow aloft that develops.
Instability is higher on Sunday...and that, to me, looks to be a day to watch for a risk for stronger wind gusts.
The data does suggest more of a MCS setup (complex of storms) this weekend. Forecasting those this far in advance is challenging. So we plan to keep storm chances low--yet elevated for the weekend until we get better data to work with.
NEXT WEEK COOLING:
All of the models now on board with a decent cool down next week. The main days look to be Tue/Wed/Thu.
The EURO is a bit more north with the core compared to yesterday. Overall, 75-83 looks to be the temperature range for those days. Any instability showers/clouds that develop under this upper low could easily keep those numbers lower.
NOAA does have their maps out for the fall...and this will get updated again in mid August.
Temperatures-- below normal just to our west
Precipitation-- near normal here, and above normal in the drought areas.
This clearly has an EL Nino look to it. So they seem to be leaning on this taking place.
We shall see.
We have the first Air Quality Alert of the year today. Pollution has settled in the Ohio Valley with calm winds, and it will continue to collect today. There are some easy ways to reduce pollution other than carpooling or planting a tree (which many would like to do, but may not have time for).
Packing a lunch or dinner so you don't have to drive to get something to eat on your lunch/dinner break.
Skip mowing the yard today.
Raise the thermostat 2° today.
Temperatures will reach 93° this afternoon. With dew point temperatures in the 70s, the humidity is oppressive. The high humidity will make it feel close to 100° this afternoon, so get ready to sweat! Because of all the heat and humidity, a stray shower cannot be ruled out; however, most of the area will stay dry.
An approaching cold front will bring a few storms our way tomorrow afternoon and early evening. These storms are not expected to be severe; however, some may have strong winds. This cold front will help to clear out some of the pollution that has settled in the valley, so air quality should begin improving tomorrow.
10am-12pm: 20% chance
12pm-2pm: 40% chance
2pm-6pm: 60% chance
6pm-10pm: 40% chance
10pm-12am: 30% chance
As noted, our repeating weather pattern this summer looks to ...well....repeat.
The heat is making headlines today (only because it has been cool...the heat isn't anything unusual).
But for the first time this year, an Air Quality Alert has been issued for the Louisville Metro for Tuesday.
We usually see several of these each summer as stagenant air leads to air pollution. This summer, we have experienced many cold fronts that are "shaking up" the air in our area. Tomorrow, the winds look light along with building heat.
Relief is coming with a cold front that is currently impacting the northern Plains.
The heat/air pollution will be the main headlines. Moisture from a cutoff low in the Carolina's trying to stretch NW into our southeastern counties. Coverage looks sparse and plan to keep storm chances low for our far southeastern sections.
The cold front approaches. Showers are possible early in the day with a much greater chance in the afternoon. Timing for the afternoon rain/storms looks to be just after the lunch hour.
By Wednesday evening, the storm focus should be primarily over Kentucky.
Cold front is through...drier/less cooler air filters in.
SEVERE RISK WEDNESDAY:
Not impressed with this.
Winds aloft with the front are showing up on the models roughly in the 20-30kt range. Once we cross 40kt, you have a greater risk for sustained wind damage potential.
While the winds are weak, any sunshine could lead to values like the NAM is suggesting when it comes to instability.
When you have weak shear and high instability, you can get strong storms...but much more isolated in nature and brief. The stronger winds aloft would allow longevity to the strongest storms. Since we look to lack that, that reduces the risk locally. Nevertheless, heavy downpours/lightning can be expected.
I do have concerns that the batches of storms will have gaps in them. In other words, some of us will get shafted on the rainfall once again. We will fine-tune that once we get closer.
Expect several adjustments to the weekend forecast. The timing of the next front is still waffling on the models.
At the moment, the latest runs of the EURO and GFS are trying to hint at a MCS (complex of storms) Saturday /Saturday night.
I have low rain chances for Saturday at the moment as today is only Monday. But if the above signals remains...we will have to rain the storm risk for Saturday.
Sunday still has a risk for scattered storms.
After the weekend front, there are strong signs of a cool down moving back in.
GFS isn't as impressed and shows a more progressive pattern
EURO shows much more dramatic blocking of the systems and allows the upper low in the Great Lakes to really dig into our area next week.
If the GFS is correct, the brief cool wave would move in Monday.
If the EURO is correct, the more dramatic cool down would be delayed until Tuesday or Wednesday and lasting the rest of the week.
GFS would suggest low 80s at its coolest. EURO would suggest low 70s.
So far this summer, the EURO has led the way with these cool snaps---so we have leaned our forecast in that direction.
Will we see another one after that? Stay tuned.
WHAT DO THESE NUMBERS...AND PLACES HAVE IN COMMON? CLICK BELOW TO FIND OUT. I STOPPED COMPLAINING AFTER I READ THIS :)
106, 127, 134, 159, 129, 130, 156, 122, 131, 131
Wadi Halfa, Sudan
Death Valley, California
Lut Desert, Iran
Tirat Tsvi, Israel
***LET US KNOW ON FACEBOOK AND TWITTER IF YOU LOVE THE HEAT!***
Sorry about all of the audio issues as of late. We are working on it!!
It does glitch a bit toward the end, but it at least works :)
To sum it up...hot...stormy...cooler...stormy..much cooler!!