Meteorologist Kristy Steward's First Warning Forecast
Happy Thursday night! It was another gloomy day with some scattered rain showers and cool temperatures. We will continue on a warming trend until a powerful cold front derails us Saturday.
Tonight we will be mostly dry with partial clearing in the sky. Dense patchy will likely form late tonight into Friday morning. Overnight lows drop into the low 40s.
Some sunshine helps us warm up a little more Friday. Highs in the upper 50s. Enjoy the drier break Friday because we’re in for some wild weather Saturday!
A low pressure system will develop along a strong cold front right over Hampton Roads. This means we’ll go from one extreme to the next in the span of a few hours.
First, expect heavy downpours and possible severe storms throughout Saturday morning. Northeastern North Carolina and Southside of Hampton Roads are under a Level 2 out of 5 risk for severe weather. The rest of Hampton Roads is under a Level 1 of 5 risk. Our greatest threats are damaging straight-line winds and heavy downpours that could create localized flooding. Up to 1” of rain is expected to fall. A few isolated tornadoes can’t be ruled out.
Winds will also pick up Friday night - Saturday night with the strongest winds being around the low pressure system midday Saturday. Expect sustained winds around 25 MPH and gusts up to 50 MPH. The strongest wind gusts will be across the Eastern Shore. Gusts around 35 MPH inland. These strong winds will bring 7-10 feet waves along the coast in the Atlantic. They will also cause our temperatures to rapidly drop.
Highs in the mid 60s will be reached just ahead of the cold front Saturday mid-morning. Then they plunge into the mid 30s Saturday afternoon dropping to the mid 20s Saturday night. Since we stay windy Saturday night, wind chills will be in the low to mid teens.
Having a rapid temperature drop, we’ll likely see the rain transition into snow Saturday afternoon. However, we aren’t expecting anything more than a dusting for accumulation. It will be really hard for any snow to stick because the ground will be so warm and moist from the activity Saturday morning. Also, the strong winds will prevent a lot from sticking. The Eastern Shore and Middle Peninsula have the best chance at catching a dusting.
After we get through Saturday’s crazy weather, things will be calmer, but a lot colder Sunday. High temperatures in the upper 40s under plenty of sunshine.
It’s just one day of cold though. Highs return to the 60s for the workweek, even jumping to 70° Tuesday! The workweek starts off dry. Wednesday and Thursday we may see some isolated to scattered rain showers with stronger winds as a low pressure system rides along the coast mid-week.
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