Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Wilmington, NC

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494 FXUS62 KILM 162027 AFDILM Area Forecast Discussion National Weather Service Wilmington NC 327 PM EST Tue Jan 16 2018 .SYNOPSIS... Weak high pressure will slip offshore tonight. A cold front will cross the coast late Wednesday, bringing a mix of rain and snow, with small accumulations possible inland across SE NC Wednesday and Wednesday evening. Cold and dry arctic air will build in late Wednesday and Thursday. Temperatures will warm into the weekend, as high pressure moves offshore. Another cold front will bring rain chances early next week. && .NEAR TERM /THROUGH WEDNESDAY NIGHT/...
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As of 300 PM Tuesday...Main headline for the near term, `Winter Weather Advisory` posted for inland portions of the area, for the potential of around an inch of snow, possibly closer to 2 inches over northern Marlboro county. A rain/snow mix will be underway at daybreak west of I-95, spreading eastward, with the leading edge of stratiform precipitation reaching the coast midday to early in the afternoon. Areas outside of the advisory, may see snow as well, but less than 1 inch of accumulation expected. The rain and snow will be off the coast in the evening Wednesday. Adjustments to the Advisory may be made overnight with new data, and we cannot rule out completely, a `Winter Storm Warning` if 2 inches is expected within 12 hours for portions of the I-95 corridor. Evaporative cooling and cold air advection will keep maximum temperatures locked into the 30s inland, and 40s near the coast Wednesday. Snow may not change over to rain near coastal zones, or if so, not until evening, when temperatures finally become cold enough, chasing the moisture to sea.
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&& .SHORT TERM /THURSDAY THROUGH THURSDAY NIGHT/...
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As of 300 PM Tuesday...A northwest flow aloft will prevail through the period as surface high pressure builds in from the west. Essentially a temperature forecast as any moisture will be well off to the northeast. Lows Thursday morning will be in the lower 20s with daytime highs in the lower to middle 40s. Some air mass modification will keep temperatures a little warmer Friday morning with mostly middle 20s.
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&& .LONG TERM /FRIDAY THROUGH TUESDAY/...
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As of 300 PM Tuesday...Surface high centered over southern AL Fri morning will shift east for the weekend, moving offshore. Very dry air in place, precipitable water will be under a quarter inch Fri and Sat, ensure the region remains dry. Near climo temperatures Fri will start warming Sat as weak low level warm advection begins. The progressive mid-level pattern, responsible for the surface high`s rapid shift east, will become a little more amplified as a southern stream shortwave moves along the Gulf Coast this weekend. The wave weakens/opens up as it lifts into the southeast and it seems unlikely that it will be accompanied by any rainfall as it passes late Sat night and Sun. Weak 5h ridge starts to build over the western Atlantic early next week which, coupled with low level warm advection, leads to a warming trend Sun and Mon. Best precip chances during the period continue to be associated with cold front crossing the area late Mon or Mon night. Parent low remains displaced well north of the area, moving across the Great Lakes and southern Canada. Although there is a brief period of moisture return ahead of the front, moisture will be limited and current chc pop Mon and Mon night seems reasonable. Cold advection is limited behind the front as the 5h trough lifts northeast instead of moving overhead. Lack of cold advection combined with the return of the 5h ridge over the western Atlantic will keep temperatures near to slightly above climo in the post front environment.
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&& .AVIATION /20Z TUESDAY THROUGH SUNDAY/...
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As of 18Z...Moderate confidence that wintry weather is on the way. Increasing clouds tonight as the cold front approaches. The inland terminals will see weather several hours before the coastal terminals. Precip will likely start out as rain, or a rain and snow mix. Cold air advection will bring temps at 850 mb down to -4 to -5 Celsius, and this will cause the precip to change to complete snow by early afternoon. The changeover will cause ceilings and visibilities to quickly lower to IFR/LIFR. The coastal terminals will still be VFR at the end of the forecast period, but will be going downhill from there. Extended Outlook...VFR.
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&& .MARINE...
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NEAR TERM /THROUGH WEDNESDAY NIGHT/... As of 300 PM Tuesday...A decent marine period, prior to worsening late on Wednesday, as a cold front spills colder air over the waters. N-NW winds and wind-chop, mainly light, will mix with E swell this period tonight and Wednesday, with significant wave heights of 4 feet or less. Late Wednesday, rain may begin to reduce visibilities. SHORT TERM /THURSDAY THROUGH THURSDAY NIGHT/... As of 300 PM Tuesday...Expect blustery winds behind a departing potent mid level system on the order of 20-25 knots from the northwest for a few hours. With the new airmass coming in from the west, cold air advection isn`t as strong as we have seen the past few events and winds diminish quickly Thursday to 10-15 knots from the west/northwest where they will remain for the most part through Friday morning. Significant seas will be 4-7 feet early on falling in concert with the winds to 2-4 feet by Friday morning. LONG TERM /FRIDAY THROUGH SUNDAY/... As of 300 PM Tuesday...Weak surface high southwest of the waters Fri morning will quickly shift east. Southwest flow on the low end of the 10 to 15 kt range Fri drops to around 10 kt by Sat morning. The center of the high expands over the western Atlantic with the surface pressure gradient becoming ill-defined. Winds will drop under 10 kt late Sat night and remain light and variable Sun with the surface ridge axis in the region.
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&& .ILM WATCHES/WARNINGS/ADVISORIES...
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SC...Winter Weather Advisory from 4 AM to 7 PM EST Wednesday for SCZ017-023-024. NC...Winter Weather Advisory from 4 AM to 7 PM EST Wednesday for NCZ087-096-105. MARINE...None.
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&& $$ SYNOPSIS...SHK NEAR TERM...MJC SHORT TERM...SHK LONG TERM...III AVIATION...DL

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