Area Forecast Discussion
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FXUS64 KLUB 231727 AAB

Area Forecast Discussion...UPDATED
National Weather Service Lubbock TX
1127 AM CST Thu Feb 23 2017

VFR conditions currently in place at all three TAF sites. Wind
speeds continue to increase from the west southwest at KLBB and
KPVW with area cameras indicating increasing blowing dust. This
may reduce visibilites into the MVFR range at times but for the
most part visibilities should remain VFR. Wind speeds will
decrease after sunset back below 11 knots with a gradual
transition to the northwest. Another increase in speed will be
possible Friday afternoon just outside of this TAF cycle.



.PREV DISCUSSION... /issued 551 AM CST Thu Feb 23 2017/

W-SW winds will increase through the morning becoming sustained
around 25 to 30 kts at KLBB and KPVW by early afternoon. The winds
may cause some occasional light visibility reductions due to
blowing dust at both terminals through the afternoon. An Airport
Weather Warning may be needed at KLBB for sustained winds of 30+
kts for a period this afternoon. Winds at KCDS should peak around
20 to 25 kts sustained this afternoon. It will remain breezy this
evening with winds gradually swinging around to the northwest

PREV DISCUSSION... /issued 351 AM CST Thu Feb 23 2017/


.The combination of strong west winds, and a very warm and dry
airmass will result in a critical fire danger across the forecast
area today...

As an upper-trough crosses the Rockies and moves into the central
and northern plains, a strong upper-level jet with wind speeds in
excess of 110 kts will overspread West Texas today. At the surface,
a low over southeast CO/southwest KS this morning will deepen and
broaden, with a surface trough extending south through western OK
and the Rolling Plains of West Texas. The already dry air mass
across the forecast area this morning will dry further as subsidence
drying and warming combines with mixing of the higher momentum and
dry airmass aloft. Model progs suggest mixing up to around the 700
mb level, where winds speeds will be running around 30 to 40 kts.
There is a bit of uncertainty in regards to the magnitude of the
winds across our area today, as guidance has been fairly consistent
painting one 700 mb wind max to our south and one to our north, with
a relative minimum over our forecast area. Even so, MOS guidance has
been very consistent in indicating sustained winds of 25 to 35 kts
for locations on the Caprock, with the strongest winds located near
the state line with NM. As such, we expect wind speeds to rise
firmly into the advisory range (sustained at 31-39 mph) across the
Caprock. High wind speeds (40+ mph) may be obtained across the far
southwest Texas Panhandle, and we will issue a High Wind Warning for
that area. Winds of this magnitude should generate some blowing
dust. Temperatures will be quite warm again. Although the primary
low-level thermal ridge will shift east into east-central Okla
southwest into central Texas, 850 mb temps will only be slightly
lower across West Texas, and still near 20 degrees C. With the
downsloping partially counteracting cold advection coming in from
the west. High temperatures should range from the middle 70s in the
northwest, to near 90 in the southern Rolling Plains. The record
high of 85 degrees at Lubbock could be threatened, as we are
forecasting a high of 83.

The winds will be slow to die down this evening, and likely won`t go
light until after midnight. The winds will also gradually turn to
the northwest, bringing cooler air in. With the airmass exceedingly
dry, temperatures will fall quickly once the winds diminish and lows
will fall back closer to seasonable norms of mainly 30s.

Warm weather along with strong winds will continue over the next
week with only a brief interruption on Saturday.

Friday is still poised to be another day of fire weather even
though temperatures will be much cooler. A pacific cold front will
have already passed through the area bringing extremely dry air
into the area ahead of the next cold front. Winds aloft will
continue to be strong but the low level thermal ridge will be
supposed in the post frontal air. A cold front will back door into
the area Friday night into Saturday morning. The associated
surface ridge will be sliding to our east during the day Saturday
leading to the coolest day in the period. This cool down and
reprieve in fire weather will be brief as additional short waves
move through a progressive upper level pattern.

Sunday will be the next day with strong winds as a short wave
moving just north of the area will increase the height gradient
and bring strong wind maxes aloft. The next short wave will arrive
on Tuesday bringing even stronger winds aloft than on Sunday. We
may see another brief cool down around Wednesday as another cold
front invades the region.

Dangerous fire weather conditions are expected across
the entire forecast area this afternoon due to the combination of
strong winds, temperatures about 15 to 25 degrees above normal, and
very low dewpoint temperatures, resulting in minimum RH values
around 5 to 15 percent. RFTI values will range from about 5 to 8,
with the highest values in the western South Plains, and the
forecast fire danger is very high to extreme. A Red Flag Warning is
in effect from 11 AM to 8 PM. RH recovery will be very poor tonight.

Continued critical fire weather conditions are expected for
Friday with a brief reprieve on Saturday and picking up again
Sunday through Tuesday. Temperatures will be much cooler on Friday
but winds will continue to be strong along with much drier air
behind a cold front Friday morning. The southwestern South Plains
is expected to see the driest and windiest conditions on Friday
afternoon. A stronger cold front will come in on Friday night
relieving fire weather concerns for Saturday. However, strong
winds and warmer temperatures can be expected again beginning on
Sunday and lasting through Tuesday.



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