1:45 PM CDT | May 16, 2019
Today will be the last "calm" day for the state. Other than some isolated storms toward Fort Stockton and El Paso, the state will be quiet today. Bigger changes take place late tomorrow as a storm system approaches. This is the system to which I have been referring over the past week. It can be seen on water vapor satellite moving into the Western United States. This morning's weather models had a partial data set available, but a more complete set will be available for the evening runs. With this new data, a couple of this morning's weather models trended a bit stronger with the system.
Regarding tomorrow's forecast, a few severe storms could develop in Northwest/West Central Texas during the late afternoon and early evening hours. There is some uncertainty with the late day storm coverage as some of the guidance shows little to no development, while others have around a 30% coverage. Regardless, the atmosphere would support supercells capable of large hail, damaging winds, and even a couple tornadoes. More numerous thunderstorms are expected to develop overnight and early Saturday morning across West Central Texas and the Big Country. This activity will grow upscale as it pushes east and northeast. Expect some of this activity to be severe with large hail and damaging winds the main concerns. A couple tornadoes will be possible, but the tornado risk does not appear too great at this time.
The "spark" that will trigger the Friday night/Saturday morning storms will be a lead impulse ahead of the main system. Right now, it appears that the lift from this impulse will push east of the I-35 corridor by early afternoon. This means that the greatest storm chances on Saturday for areas west of I-35 appear to be in the morning hours. For areas along the I-35 corridor, including DFW, the greatest storm chances appear to be from mid-morning through early afternoon. East of the I-35 corridor (east of Dallas), the best chances appear to be during the afternoon hours. The SPC has an enhanced risk for parts of Northeast/North Central Texas on Saturday. This is where confidence in severe storms is highest; however, severe storms are certainly possible in the slight and marginal risk areas as well.
The primary system will move into Northwest Texas and Oklahoma late in the day, but the atmosphere may not be able to recover and "recharge" in the wake of the earlier storm activity. If the morning storms are not as widespread or clear out earlier, we could see a few storms redevelop in western North Texas late in the day. This threat is very conditional and depends on how quickly the atmosphere can recover. I have attached a loop from one of this morning's weather models below. It shows the simulated radar from midnight tomorrow night through 7:00 PM Saturday. The purpose of sharing this loop is to merely illustrate how things could unfold from Friday night into early Saturday evening. Keep in mind that this is simply a weather model, and that the radar conditions never look "exactly" as they show. It does give you a visual of the scenario, though...
Keep an eye on your forecast as adjustments can be expected. Not everyone at risk for severe weather will see severe weather. It does mean that the potential exists, particularly across the enhanced risk area. Additional severe weather risks are expected on Monday and Tuesday. Remember, a watch means that conditions are favorable for the development of severe weather. A warning means that severe weather is imminent or is already occurring and to seek shelter immediately. Localized flooding can be expected for parts of the state during this period as well. For the latest local weather information for your area, please visit the National Weather Service website. You can also find Texas Storm Watch on Facebook. To help make sure you do not miss any updates, LIKE the Facebook page and join the Facebook group. I will be posting periodic updates there as all of this unfolds.