The active weather pattern that we have been experiencing during the past couple of weeks has one more potent system to send our way and it looks like it can produce heavy rain here in the Mid-Atlantic region and ingredients may come together for a severe weather outbreak. A major storm will develop in the Mid-Atlantic region by Thursday afternoon and this combined with vigorous upper-level energy and powerful low-level and upper-level jet streaks could result in a severe weather outbreak in addition to some heavy rainfall. On the backside of the storm, it’ll turn much cooler and windy on Friday with additional rain showers possible and accumulating snow is likely in the Ohio Valley and in the higher elevations of the Appalachian Mountains. One final note, grounds are now pretty well saturated after the recent soaking rain events and this will raise concerns for localized flooding on Thursday and Thursday night.
Ingredients are coming together for a major storm to develop in the Mid-Atlantic region by Thursday afternoon and it may be accompanied by a severe weather outbreak. Low pressure will likely intensify on Thursday just on the east side of the Appalachians as it treks from northern Virginia to south-central Pennsylvania. Strong low-level winds at the 850 millibar level (~5000 feet) will push warm, humid air into the I-95 corridor and help to destabilize the atmosphere. There will also be a strong jet streak in upper-levels of the atmosphere (500 mb) to aid in upward motion along the I-95 corridor during the day on Thursday. All of this can support some heavy rainfall in the period from late Wednesday night to Thursday night and the potential formation of severe thunderstorm cells which could generate tornadoes in parts of the Mid-Atlantic region.
On the backside of the storm, much cooler air will push into the Mid-Atlantic region on Friday and winds will be quite strong out of the northwest. It’ll stay quite cool on Saturday, but calmer and warmer conditions will take place on Sunday along with plenty of sunshine.
Meteorologist Paul Dorian