There could be some stormy weather late tonight in parts of Alabama. The National Weather Service said there is a marginal risk for a tornado or two and damaging wind gusts starting Wednesday night and lasting into Thursday morning ahead of a cold front.
It is also expected to be windy later today away from the storms, and wind advisories will go into effect tonight for north and north-central parts of the state. Rain and storms will be possible through the day today but the risk for stronger storms will start later tonight — around 8 p.m. — in northwest Alabama and move southward and eastward overnight. NOAA’s Storm Prediction Center is maintaining a Level 1 out of 5 risk — or marginal risk — for severe weather for the western half of Alabama. A marginal risk means that isolated severe storms will be possible.
Areas along the Mississippi state line in Alabama will be the most likely to see stronger storms, according to the weather service. The threat for severe weather is expected to lessen some as the storms move eastward overnight. However, storms could intensify again during the day on Thursday, and the Storm Prediction Center has carried over a Level 1 risk for severe weather for south Alabama for Thursday.
A Level 1 risk for severe weather will continue into Thursday for the areas in dark green. The threat for severe storms is not a sure thing, but forecasters are more confident about non-thunderstorm winds affecting the northern half of the state tonight.
The weather service said sustained winds of 20-30 mph will be possible with gusts as high as 45 mph overnight, which could bring down some tree limbs and power lines. A wind advisory will be in effect for all of north Alabama from 9 p.m. today until 9 a.m. Thursday. Those counties are Lauderdale, Colbert, Franklin, Lawrence, Limestone, Madison, Morgan, Marshall, Jackson, DeKalb and Cullman. Another wind advisory will be in effect for the northern part of central Alabama from 9 p.m. today until 9 a.m. Thursday.
The central Alabama counties in the advisory are Marion, Lamar, Fayette, Winston, Walker, Blount, Etowah, Calhoun, Cherokee, Cleburne, Picken, Tuscaloosa, Jefferson, Shelby, St. Clair, Talladega and Clay.