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Mid-March notes and the chance for thunderstorms - The Galveston County Daily News: Weather Watch

December 9, 2016

Mid-March notes and the chance for thunderstorms

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Posted: Saturday, March 15, 2014 12:05 pm

It will come as no surprise that the first half of March in Galveston County has been much cooler than normal, with average temperatures running near 6 degrees below normal at both Galveston and League City. At this rate, March, 2014 has a chance to go into the record books as one of the 10 coldest of record, locally. Based on the temperatures so far, and long-term forecasts, it seems unlikely, however, that this month end up anywhere near the top five coldest of record.

Rainfall, on the other hand, has been just about normal at both locations with a little less than an inch and a half for the month.

There will be a chance of more rain this weekend and there is a possibility of severe thunderstorms, though it appears the greatest chance will be to our north. The culprits are an upper-level disturbance tracking east from New Mexico and yet another windy spring cold front due to arrive Sunday.

The main factor inhibiting any significant storm activity in our area is a layer of warm air aloft that will put a “lid” or “cap” on the atmosphere. This will tend to suppress storm activity. However, if instability increases enough to break or erode the cap, then storms can rapidly develop and reach severe levels. Currently, the betting is that this will not occur near the coast, but will be a stronger possibility north of Houston.

At any rate, some rain seems likely before the upper-level disturbance moves east and dry, chilly air moves in behind the front. I would not be surprised to see another Wind Advisory and Small Craft Warning issued by tomorrow. After all, spring is almost here.

24-hour precipitation outlook

Current upper-level map and satellite image

Severe weather outlook