A Flash Flood Warning has been issued for Denton and Collin Counties in North Texas. This warning runs until 7 AM although it could just as easily be extended in duration. Automated rain gauges have indicated that rainfall rates of one to one and a half inches are occuring over the past hour. Many roads are experiencing flooding and are being closed. Flood waters will continue and could begin to impact roadways that do not normally flood. With Black Friday shopping traffic expected this morning I stress the need to not drive into flood waters.
FLASH FLOOD WARNING NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE FORT WORTH TX 428 AM CST FRI NOV 27 2015
THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN FORT WORTH HAS ISSUED A
* FLASH FLOOD WARNING FOR… COLLIN COUNTY IN NORTH CENTRAL TEXAS… DENTON COUNTY IN NORTH CENTRAL TEXAS…
* UNTIL 700 AM CST
* AT 423 AM CST…AUTOMATED RAIN GAUGES INDICATED THAT ONE INCH PER HOUR RAINFALL RATES WERE FALLING OVER DENTON AND COLLIN COUNTIES WHERE UP TO THREE INCHES OF RAIN HAVE ALREADY FALLEN. DENTON COUNTY DISPATCH INDICATED THAT MANY COUNTY ROADS WERE ALREADY FLOODED AND CLOSED…AND THAT FLOOD WATERS CONTINUED TO RISE. EVEN ONE INCH OF ADDITIONAL RAINFALL IS EXPECTED TO CAUSE FLOOD WATERS TO BEGIN TO RISE AND IMPACT LOCATIONS THAT DO NOT COMMONLY FLOOD.
TURN AROUND…DONT DROWN WHEN ENCOUNTERING FLOODED ROADS. MOST FLOOD DEATHS OCCUR IN VEHICLES.
Ice Storm Warning for all of the Texas Panhandle beginning late tonight and lasting through Saturday. A major winter storm will bring significant accumulations of ice to much of the Texas Panhandle. The northwest Texas Panhandle may end up with more sleet/snow. Substantial accumulations are possible which will make road conditions treacherous. Some ice accumulations over 0.50″ are possible which would result in an enhanced risk of power outages, tree damage, and some infrastructure damage due to strong north winds.
Updated at 5:48 AM: A Ice Storm Warning is in place for the South Plains and Rolling Plains in West Texas. Like the Panhandle a major ice storm is possible across parts of the region with ice accumulations of 0.25″ to 0.50″+ possible. Travel conditions will be extremely hazardous. Power outages, tree damage, and some infrastructure damage will be possible where ice accumulations exceed half an inch.
Less significant accumulations of ice are possible across parts of the Big Country into Northwest Texas on Friday and Friday Night. The risk for significant ice is lower for now but any ice that develops could make bridges and overpasses slick and hazardous. Check back for forecast updates because if the colder air moves more quickly than there is the potential for a more substantial winter weather event.
A Flash Flood Watch is in effect for much of North Texas, Northeast Texas, and Texoma. Temperatures will be too warm for winter precipitation but moisture content in the atmosphere will be much greater. Several rounds of precipitation are expected with the first heavy batch arriving later this afternoon. A second round will occur Friday morning and a third Friday Night into Saturday Morning. 3 to 7 inches of rain will be possible with localized amounts up to 10 inches. Not all of that will fall at once since this event will be spread out over three days. Nevertheless soil conditions remain saturated from past events and the threat for flash flooding will be high. Do not drive into flood waters and don’t let your kids play in them either. Temperatures will be much colder on Friday and Saturday making for miserable conditions.
Let me start out by wishing you all a Happy Thanksgiving. Even though we’re going to be dealing with a variety of major weather issues over the coming days I’m thankful that we’ve ended our multi-year drought. I’m thankful that we didn’t have any loss of life with last week’s tornado outbreak in the Panhandle. Finally I’m thankful that so many have come to trust our weather blog as their daily source for weather information. Never did I imagine that we would have the audience we do today. Paige and I will be making a bit of a road trip later on to have Thanksgiving dinner with my family.
There will be no issues with winter weather until late tonight across the Panhandle. The winter weather threat will shift south as temperatures fall below freezing on Friday across the South Plains, Rolling Plains, and perhaps some of Northwest Texas. As pointed out in the warning summary there is the potential for a major ice storm in parts of the Panhandle, South Plains, and Northwest Texas. The threat also looks to include the western half of Oklahoma – perhaps as far east as Oklahoma City. Road conditions will be hazardous and travel is strongly discouraged on Friday and Saturday in the Texas Panhandle, West Texas, and in Western Oklahoma. We’ll have to closely watch the progress of the cold front. If the front is a little faster or a little stronger than expected we may have to pull the freezing line further southeast. We don’t expect any winter weather in North Texas or the D/FW Metroplex (including Interstate 35) – we’ve had several questions about that.
Ahead of the cold front temperatures are quite warm for late November. This morning temperatures are in the 60s across much of Texas except the northern Panhandle where the cold front is beginning to arrive. These warm temperatures will continue with gusty south winds today and tonight. As the cold front arrives at a given location you can expect winds to become gusty out of the north along with a quick 20 degree temperature drop. That will occur later today across the Texas Panhandle, tonight across West Texas, Northwest Texas, and locations north of Interstate 20, and into Friday for folks in the Hill Country and Central Texas. The front has been moving a little more quickly so these arrival times are subject to change.
The first round of heavy precipitation is expected to develop this afternoon across the Big Country into Northwest Texas. This area of heavier rain and storms will move east into North Texas by mid-afternoon and into Northeast Texas this evening. Short-term weather models have indicated a little more instablity this afternoon in a small section of North Texas generally from D/FW north to the Red River. We’ll have to keep an eye on a low severe weather risk this afternoon in that small region. In all likelihood the severe weather threat won’t materialize – but if it does we may see one or two storms become severe with localized damaging wind gusts and perhaps a brief tornado. Any severe weather threat would diminish after sunset. A Flash Flood Watch begins at 6 PM for North Texas and continues into Saturday.
With the blog already longer than I wanted we’ll end it here. We’ll likely be on the quiet side through the afternoon hours as we spend time with our families. We’ll post updates as needed if we see any major forecast changes. We’ll have another detailed update tonight or sooner if necessary. Have a great Thanksgiving!
Winter Storm & Heavy Rain/Flooding Threat Begins Thanksgiving Night
Winter Storm ramps up Thursday Night across the Panhandle as temperatures fall below freezing. Rain will change to freezing rain/sleet across parts of the South Plains and far Northwest Texas on Friday. Hazardous Travel Conditions are expected Friday and Saturday across the Texas Panhandle, portions of the South Plains, and Western Oklahoma.
Several rounds of heavy rain are expected further east and south where temperatures will be cold – but remain above freezing. Flash Flooding is a threat across the Concho Valley, Big Country, Northwest Texas, North Texas, Central Texas, and Northeast Texas.
River flooding will continue into the upcoming week as a result of upcoming heavy rain.
A strong cold front will cause temperatures to drop 20-30 degrees by Friday and Saturday across nearly all of Texas. Gusty north winds will result in wind chills in the 10s-20s-30s (variability from north to south).
Precipitation Timing and Overall Chances
Chance of precipitation Wednesday Night
Chance of precipitation Thursday
Chance of precipitation Thursday Night
Chance of precipitation Friday
Chance of precipitation Friday Night
Chance of precipitation Saturday
Chance of precipitation Saturday Night
Chance of precipitation Sunday
Winter Weather Accumulations
Outlook for Significant Ice Accumulations over 0.25″
Snow outlook for over 4 inches of snow
There is the potential for significant freezing rain accumulations in the southeastern Texas Panhandle into parts of the South Plains. Widespread ice accumulation totals of 0.10″ to 0.25″ appear likely at this time which will result in hazardous travel conditions Friday and Saturday. There may be a corridor of enhanced ice accumulations over a yet to be known location of 0.50″ or perhaps higher. That amount of ice accumulation is significant enough to cause damage to power infrastructure and trees. A winter mix of freezing rain initially Thursday Night may change or mix with sleet/snow by Friday/Friday Night across the central Texas Panhandle with hazardous travel conditions. The event may end as snow across the northwest Texas Panhandle where 3 to 5 inches of snow could accumulate. This event is still 48 hours out and we do anticipate forecast changes. Forecasting winter weather in Texas is difficult enough. Challenges include the timing of a cold front and how quickly temperatures will fall below freezing. A layer of warm air about 4,000 feet ASL will determine the precipitation type (Freezing rain, sleet, snow etc). A thicker warm layer would result in all freezing rain. A thinner warm layer would allow for sleet and eventually snow.) Thus the accumulation forecast depends greatly on the type of precipitation falling. Regardless hazardous travel conditions are expected across the Texas Panhandle, parts of the South Plains, perhaps Far Northwest Texas, and western Oklahoma on Friday and Saturday. This includes Interstate 40, Interstate 27, and US Highway 287 to name a few of the major roads.
Heavy Rain/Flood Potential
There will be multiple rounds of rain over the next few days across the eastern two-thirds of Texas. Light rain may develop later today across South Texas. Mist or light rain is possible tonight as warm air advection causes low clouds and overall dreary conditions to spread north. The weather will actually be warm for late November as high dewpoint values spread inland. Combined with moisture from now Hurricane Sandra in the eastern Pacific the stage will be set for a classic El Nino precipitation event. One round of heavy rain will occur tomorrow morning across the Texas Panhandle. This first round will be all liquid rain for the Panhandle as temperatures will still be above freezing. By Thursday Afternoon moderate to locally heavy rain will be possible across South-Central Texas into East Texas. Heavy rain will then develop late Thursday/early Friday across the Big Country, Northwest Texas, and North Texas. Rain will remain possible during the afternoon hours on Friday but it may be lighter across Texas – a lull between heavier rounds. A third round of widespread heavy rain will spread across Southwest Texas, the Big Country, the Concho Valley, North Texas, and Northeast Texas on Saturday. This is the timeframe when the flooding potential will be highest. Winter weather will be occuring where temperatures are below freezing in the Texas Panhandle and portions of the South Plains. Flash Flood Watches will be issued later today or on Thursday for many of the locations I named here. Rain chances will end from west to east Saturday Night into Sunday.
Today is going to be windy and warm across Texas. A few light showers are possible. Compared to Thursday, Friday, and Saturday travel conditions today will be fairly good. Sunday won’t be as bad either as we have precipitation move out. Unlike today there could be issues on Sunday from flooded roadways in the eastern two-thirds of Texas. Slick spots are possible across the Panhandle from their winter storm. Sunday and Monday will be dry before another system moves into Texas starting on Tuesday through Thursday. We could have more issues but I prefer to only focus on one storm at a time.
Active Weather Scenario Thanksgiving into the Weekend – The Overview
Wednesday is expected to be a decent travel day for most of Texas. It may get wet by the second half of the day in parts of Texas but we’re not expecting severe weather, heavy rain, or winter weather issues on Wednesday. By Thursday that will change as the potential for heavier rain increases. Rain chances will continue into Friday and Saturday, potentially Sunday depending on how things evolve. The heaviest rain totals for the upcoming event are anticipated to be from the Big Country and Northwest Texas east along the Red River through Texoma into North Texas and Northeast Texas. Some flooding issues can be expected but like the rest of the forecast we’ll have to wait on specifics until we’re closer. Likewise temperatures could fall below freezing in the Texas Panhandle and South Plains allowing for a switchover to freezing rain or sleet by Friday. Accumulation forecasts are extremely difficult five days in advance and even more uncertainty is thrown into the mix thanks to different model solutions. Moisture levels may be further enhanced to near/above record levels thanks to a very rare late season Pacific hurricane expected to develop soon. There is the potential for accumulating ice in parts of the Panhandle by Friday into Saturday – with associated travel disruptions possible. At this time temperatures are expected to remain above freezing across the remainder of Texas – so just a cold rain. This upcoming system is very dynamic and forecast adjustments are guaranteed. The only certain thing when forecasting weather in Texas (especially in the winter) is that nothing is certain. We’ll keep you updated!
Current projections on rain accumulations through the weekend
Chance of precipitation Wednesday
Chance of precipitation Thursday Night
Chance of precipitation Thanksgiving
Chance of precipitation Friday Night
Chance of precipitation Friday
Chance of precipitation Saturday Night
Chance of precipitation Saturday
Last Nice Weather Day with a Cold Weekend Anticipated
Enjoy your Friday because it will be the last day of warm weather for a while. High temperatures this afternoon will peak in the 80s in the Rio Grande Valley with upper 60s in the Texas Panhandle and Northeast Texas. Everyone in between will likely top out in the 70s. Those temperatures are at or a bit above average for late November – a treat compared to the forecast this weekend.
A strong cold front will begin pushing into the Texas Panhandle around 6 PM this evening. By Midnight it should extend from near Oklahoma City southwest to Altus and Childress west towards Plainview. The cold front should be arriving in the D/FW Metroplex around 5 AM on Saturday – same thing for San Angelo. It’ll continue to quickly move south pushing to the coastline by 3 PM leaving only the Rio Grande Valley in the warm sector. Temperatures north of the cold front will quickly fall into the 40s and 50s with blustery north winds. As the cold front passes a given location winds will become northerly with gusts up to 30-40 MPH. It will not be the most pleasant experience for outdoor events on Saturday. If you’re heading out plan on taking a coat.
There will be a low chance for some sprinkles or light rain tonight across North Texas, Northeast Texas, and Central Texas. Slightly higher rain chances will exist overnight in Southeast Texas. Rain chances really ramp up Saturday morning in Southeast Texas and south along the coast into South Texas and the Rio Grande Valley. Severe thunderstorms are not expected and most rain will remain light. Localized rain accumulations of a quarter to half an inch will be possible in SOutheast Texas and near the coast. Rain chances will shut off by later afternoon and much cooler air ushers in from the north.
High temperatures on Saturday will generally remain steady state or slowly fall north of the cold front. Temperatures in Southeast Texas, South Texas, and the Rio Grande Valley will make it up into the 60s and 70s. Temperatures will fall quickly after the cold front arrives in the afternoon hours. The high temperatures shown here may occur in the late morning or early afternoon before falling. That is especially true for Southeast Texas and South Texas – including the I-10 cities.
Sunday morning will bring the first freeze of the fall to much of the Big Country, Concho Valley, North Texas, Northeast Texas, and possibly Central Texas. Temperatures will be well below freezing in the Texas Panhandle, South Plains/Rolling Plains, Northwest Texas, and Permian Basin. A few of the coldest spots could fall into the upper teens as winds become much lighter and skies clear. 30s to mid 40s are expected across Southeast Texas, South Texas, and the Rio Grande Valley.
Temperatures will rebound slightly on Sunday but it will still be a chilly day across all of Texas. Gone are the 60s and 70s. They’ll be replaced with upper 40s to upper 50s. The coldest spot looks to be in North and Northeast Texas where temperatures will struggle to hit 50 degrees on Sunday. Winds will be much more manageable than on Saturday so the day itself should be a tad nicer.
Thanksgiving itself has the potential to feature fairly warm temperatures with rain chances. A powerful cold front looks to push in on Thanksgiving Night or Black Friday with continued rain chances. The Friday-Sunday period next week has the potential to feature an interesting setup so we’ll have to keep an eye on it. Expect forecast adjustments as we get closer.