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HOME> Expert Assessments>Hazards Outlook

For 3-7 day hazards see Weather Prediction Center's: WPC 3-7 Day Hazards

U.S. Week-2 Hazards Outlook - Made February 25, 2020 | About the Hazards Outlook

 Days 8-14Probabilistic Days 8-14
SnowNo HazardsNo Hazards
WindNo HazardsNo Hazards

Categorical Outlooks
Experimental Probabilistic Outlooks

Valid Wednesday March 04, 2020 to Tuesday March 10, 2020

US Hazards Outlook
NWS Climate Prediction Center College Park MD
300 PM EST February 25 2020

Synopsis: Mid-level low pressure is predicted over much of northern and eastern Alaska, and most of the western and central contiguous U.S. (CONUS) during week-2. Mid-level high pressure is forecast from the north-central and northeast Pacific into southwestern Alaska, and over the eastern CONUS. Colder-than-normal temperatures are favored across most of Alaska during week-2, though there may be a brief moderation in temperatures during the middle of the forecast period. Heavy precipitation is favored across a large portion of the southeastern CONUS during the first several days of week-2.

Hazards Detailed Summary

For Friday February 28 - Tuesday March 03: WPC Days 3-7 U.S. Hazards

For Wednesday March 04 - Tuesday March 10: Mid-level low pressure is predicted over most of the Arctic Circle basin during week-2, extending southward over northern and eastern Alaska. Mid-level high pressure is forecast from the north-central and northeastern Pacific into southwestern Alaska. This pattern is conducive for anomalously cold air across most of the 49th state. Accordingly, a slight risk (>=20%) of much below normal minimum temperatures (15th percentile or less) is depicted for Alaska, with the exceptions of the North Slope and the western Aleutians, Mar 4-10. A moderate chance (>=40%) of much below normal temperatures is specified for southwestern, south-central, and central portions of Alaska, Mar 4-5. The probabilistic extremes temperature tool indicates the ECMWF and GFS ensembles support a 60% chance of subzero minimum temperatures for nearly all of the state, except the immediate southern coast. The ensembles also predict at least a 20% chance for minimum temperatures to reach/exceed -40 deg F over northern and eastern portions of the Central Interior. Over the CONUS, there is considerable discrepancy between models as to the exact placement and magnitude of the anomalous cold; therefore no hazardous temperature region has been specified on the map for the Lower 48 states.

As a surface high moves out over the western Atlantic early in week-2, return flow on its western side favors the increase of low-level Gulf moisture across the eastern CONUS. A slight risk of heavy precipitation (>1" in a 24-hour period) is indicated for the southern Ohio Valley, the Tennessee Valley, the central and eastern Gulf Coast region, and parts of adjacent states, Mar 4-6. A moderate risk of heavy precipitation is posted for Tennessee and much of the east-central Gulf Coast region, Mar 4-6, where the GFS and ECMWF-based tools were in best agreement. The 12z GEFS predicts surface low pressure will track across the eastern third of the CONUS during the first few days of week-2. With a 500-hPa trough predicted upstream of the highlighted heavy precipitation area and accompanying southwest flow aloft, combined with southerly flow near the surface, there is a significant chance that severe weather could develop. This region and time of year only adds to those odds, especially over the central Gulf Coast region. There are enhanced odds of flooding across portions of this region which have already reported very heavy rainfall in recent weeks. This includes much of the interior Gulf Coast states, where monthly precipitation anomalies range between 3-6 inches above normal, and 30-day accumulations range from 200%-400% of normal (or greater).

The ECMWF and GFS ensemble mean precipitation forecasts depict subtropical moisture coming into the southwestern/south-central CONUS late in week-2. No precipitation hazard area has been posted today for this region due to substantial uncertainty this far out in time regarding the spatial extent and amount of the precipitation. The possibility of this subtropical moisture entering the country associated with an atmospheric river will be monitored in the days ahead.

Forecaster: Anthony Artusa

$$ Please consult local NWS Forecast Offices for short range forecasts and region-specific information.


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