Surging into the seventies but storm threat on the rise; Warmest of 2020 arrives Saturday

Weather

A wild spread in temperatures Friday evening but everyone is set to warm behind a passing warm front late tonight.

WHAT A SPREAD

Afternoon temperatures surged well into the 70s late Friday and even a few sensors downstate reached the 80-degree mark Friday! What a warm up but not everyone got there. A stalled/slow moving warm front created a 30-degree spread in temperatures form north to south Friday afternoon.

Indianapolis has yet to receive a 70° day this year, the latest we gone in six years for out first 70° day in six years. On average the first 70-degree occurrence is March 18th. As first forecast Monday, we will get there Saturday.

TIMING STORMS

The warm front will begin moving north overnight and coupled with a nighttime jet stream, will ignite clusters of thunderstorms that will rumble into central Indiana overnight. These storms could get loud and a few strong to severe storms could occur along and north of the warm front. The set up tonight would favor some elevated storms that could produce hail, some damaging winds and heavy downpours. There is a portion of central Indiana under a ‘slight’ risk of severe storms as forecast from the Storm Prediction Center overnight.

SATURDAY TEMPS SURGE

Are you ready for the warm up? Don’t be too discourage if it is raining to start the day. I’m posting below the rainfall coverage forecast overnight and into Saturday afternoon. Note the coverage drops significantly through the day – meaning we will have dry time.

Despite a stormy start, we will have many rain-free and storm free hours to enjoy the warmest weather here since last October. We are forecasting a high of 76-degrees Saturday but with enough dry time could we or some locations go warmer? Stay tuned.

NEW STORMS – ROUND TWO?

The focus later Saturday will once again turn to the prospects of severe storms and a growing threat of tornadoes. At this time, Illinois seems to be the most favored for a potential tornado outbreak and the threat of large tornadoes early in the day however that threat will spread east late Saturday as a cold front races east.

Significant tornado ingredients are quite high per ensemble forecasts from the Storm Prediction Center who included a ‘moderate’ risk of severe storms along with tornado probabilities at a lofty 15%. The maps below express the confidence in the forecast for a concern of tornadoes that does include a portion of Indiana.

There is a strong likelihood that severe weather watches will be issued on Saturday, most likely a tornado watch. The storms will develop and surge east increasing the threat from early evening to midnight. We will be monitoring trends and be sure to check back often throughout the day for updates.

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