Rain expected next few days, including July Fourth

Published 3:33 pm Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Heavy rain in the coming days is likely to dampen people’s Fourth of July plans.

Kristina Sumrall, observing program manager with the National Weather Service in Calera, said Chilton County should receive 2-3 inches of rainfall through Saturday, as a large upper-level system in the Midwest retrogrades and draws moisture out of the Gulf of Mexico over the Southeast.

“It looks like there will be a high level of precipitation, and some of it potentially quite heavy,” Sumrall said.

NWS forecasts 1-3 inches of rainfall west of Interstate 65 and 2-4 inches east of the interstate.

Chances of rain are 30-40 percent overnight Tuesday, and then consistently 70-80 percent through Friday. Rain should taper off Friday night, with chances dropping to 60 percent, and continue to fall through Saturday night, at 30 percent.

Sumrall said chances for rain are always greater during the afternoon and evening, as warming temperatures “charge” showers and thunderstorms.

Though a significant amount of rain should fall the next few days, Sumrall said NWS experts don’t expect flooding, but added, “that’s something that we’ll be keeping a real close eye on.”

So far in 2013, rainfall in Clanton and the rest of Central Alabama is a few inches above average, Sumrall said.

Temperatures, meanwhile, should be moderate the rest of the week, she said. Highs will be in the low 80s, and lows will be in the low 70s, until Sunday, when the absence of storms will allow for the heat to return.

Sumrall encouraged residents planning to celebrate the Independence Day holiday outdoors to be mindful of the weather.

“Everyone needs to be indoors if there is lightning,” she said. “Have a place to go indoors if a thunderstorm comes up; and if you’re on the water, get off the water if there is lightning.”