A severe thunderstorm or tornado watch will likely be issued for portions of North Texas and Northeast Texas in the coming hours. Scattered thunderstorms have developed near Abilene in the last hour. Those storms are intensifying and could become severe as they move toward Palo Pinto and Eastland counties over the next 30-45 minutes. Large hail is the most likely short-term hazard. However, the Storm Prediction Center notes we may see a localized damaging wind and isolated tornado threat develop in a few hours as storms approach Interstate 35 and the D/FW Metroplex. That lines up with our thinking that the highest potential for an isolated tornado later this morning would be across eastern North Texas and Northeast Texas. These storms may impact the D/FW metroplex in the next two hours with the potential for hail.

 

Mesoscale Discussion 0165
NWS Storm Prediction Center Norman OK
0303 AM CST Sat Mar 09 2019

Areas affected…portions of north Texas and adjacent southeast
Oklahoma across the Arklatex

Concerning…Severe potential…Watch likely

Valid 090903Z – 091100Z

Probability of Watch Issuance…80 percent

SUMMARY…Risk for large hail — eventually evolving to include
potential for damaging winds and a tornado or two — is expected to
increase over the next few hours. WW issuance is expected.

DISCUSSION…Latest radar imagery shows an increase in convective
intensity east of the ABI/DYS area at this time, at the leading edge
of increasing large-scale ascent ahead of the advancing/potent upper
system.

Downstream of the convective increase, the airmass remains slightly
stable at low levels despite 60s dewpoints, but with steep lapse
rates above 850 mb. As ascent continues to overspread this area, a
increase in convective coverage/intensity is expected near and ahead
of the Pacific front. Convective mode remains somewhat uncertain,
though at this time it appears that a loose band of storms will
evolve near the boundary initially, with some increase in potential
for pre-frontal/more isolated storms to occur later this morning
into the Arklatex region. In any case, deep-layer shear already
supports mid-level rotation, with increasing flow aloft ahead of the
advancing upper system enhancing the favorability of the kinematic
environment with time.

At this time, it appears that severe risk will remain primarily in
the form of hail in the short term. However, even slight
destabilization of the boundary layer would support increasing
potential for surface-based convection, and an associated/
corresponding increase of risk for damaging winds and a tornado or
two. While this low-level destabilization would seem most likely to
evolve after sunrise — when some weak heating could contribute,
enough destabilization due to moisture transport alone could support
an increase in surface-based severe risk prior to sunrise —
especially over eastern portions of the discussion area.