Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Wilmington, NC

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000 FXUS62 KILM 230736 AFDILM Area Forecast Discussion National Weather Service Wilmington NC 336 AM EDT Mon May 23 2022 .SYNOPSIS...
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Good chances for showers and thunderstorms will be in place for most of the week as high pressure remains offshore and low pressure resides well to the west.
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&& .NEAR TERM /THROUGH TONIGHT/...
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A weak cold front has essentially stalled across east-central North Carolina. Surface high pressure offshore is maintaining an unseasonably warm and humid southwesterly wind across the area. A compact area of low pressure recently came ashore near Pensacola, FL. Southerly winds funneled between it and offshore high pressure will help to maintain this tropical airmass across the Carolinas through tonight. The upper level portion of the FL Panhandle low will shear off from the surface center today, accelerating northeastward and across the western Carolinas by this evening. Faster mid/upper level flow ahead of this feature will increase wind shear across the central Carolinas and into the Pee Dee region this afternoon. Bulk shear (0- 6 km) will exceed 30 knots by late afternoon. HREF ensembles suggest there is a reasonably good chance a cluster of thunderstorms will form this afternoon and approach the I-95 corridor between Florence and Lumberton around 4 pm. NAM forecast soundings show over 2000 J/kg of CAPE with an LI of -7 at Florence, supporting a threat of hail or wet microbursts. The kinematic environment could support a tornado, however more impressive 0-1 km helicity values should largely remain north and west of our forecast area where surface winds are more strongly backed near the stalled front. Convective activity may tend to dissipate as it moves east of I-95 and toward the Cape Fear area later in the evening. Forecast highs today range from the mid to upper 80s except cooler on the beaches with onshore winds. Forecast lows tonight are on the warm end of guidance given clouds and the continued unseasonably humid airmass. Local verification data over the past five days shows GFS MOS has averaged 3 degrees too cool with lows at ILM and 4 degrees too cool at FLO. So far for the month of May observed temperatures are the third warmest on record at ILM and FLO.
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&& .SHORT TERM /TUESDAY THROUGH WEDNESDAY NIGHT/...
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Forecast continues to have a look and feel of summer during the midweek period. Mid level ridging will be anchored offshore with deep cut off low pressure across the Central Plains. This pattern will continue to funnel moisture and intervals of forcing across the area. The highest pops for the period occur Tuesday as mid level dry air makes convection a bit more challenging Wednesday although by no means out of the question. The temperature forecast remains basically unchanged as wind fields do not show the back door front making much progress south so highs remain in the middle 50s or so with lows mostly in the middle to upper 60s.
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&& .LONG TERM /THURSDAY THROUGH SUNDAY/...
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The mid level pattern described in the short term section will continue to evolve with the trough and associated cold front moving east in time. Pops ramp back up to at times likely for late Thursday into Friday morning via the deep layer forcing. For the most part the weekend looks dry but the eastward progression of the front this time of year is increasingly problematic and maintained at least some mention along the coast.
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&& .AVIATION /08Z MONDAY THROUGH FRIDAY/... Multilayered clouds across the eastern Carolinas present an interesting forecast challenge this morning. Although conditions at currently VFR at all local airports, MVFR conditions are possible now through 08z at KLBT due to thunderstorms in the area. An outflow boundary extending south and west of these storms could affect the KFLO airport between 07z-08z with MVFR ceilings and a brief wind shift. The larger concern will develop this afternoon as models are consolidating their forecasts on a hefty line of thunderstorms advancing eastward across NC/SC, reaching the KFLO and KLBT airports between 20z-22z. This activity should weaken and fragment as it approaches the coast around 00z with low potential for thunderstorm impacts at KILM after 00z. MVFR ceilings may also develop after 02z as a cold front pushes southward. Extended Outlook...Convection and occasional low ceilings will remain in the forecast as tonight`s cold front stalls near the area through early Wednesday. Thursday and Friday could see late night/early morning low ceilings. Thunderstorm chances will increase again late Friday as a front approaches from the west. && .MARINE...
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Through Tonight...A cold front setting southward across North Carolina will stall inland from the coast today. Light west- southwest winds this morning will back around to the south this afternoon mainly due to the seabreeze with speeds increasing to 10- 12 knots. While there could be an isolated shower or t-storm at almost any point today, the models are focused in on a large cluster of thunderstorms remaining inland this afternoon, perhaps weakening and making it down to the coast after 9 PM. Where models several days ago thought the cold front would move through the area tonight and stall along the Georgia or South Carolina coast, an compact area of low pressure that recently moved ashore near Pensacola, FL will enhance the southerly winds across the Carolinas tonight, keeping the front from dipping any farther south than Cape Fear this evening. The boundary should begin to return north late tonight. Seas currently around 2 feet in an even mix of 5 second wind waves and 9 second southeast swell may increase to 3 feet at times across the outer portion of the coastal waters tonight, otherwise no significant changes are expected. Tuesday through Friday...Somewhat modest wind fields for the mid week period with a southerly component remaining in place. A southwest flow becomes better defined later in the work week as a front approaches and eventually pushes offshore for the weekend. Overall wind speeds will be ten knots or less until later Thursday when the range increases to 10-15 knots. Significant seas will be around two feet early increasing with the winds to 2-4 feet.
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&& .ILM WATCHES/WARNINGS/ADVISORIES... SC...None. NC...None. MARINE...None. && $$ SYNOPSIS...ILM NEAR TERM...TRA SHORT TERM...SHK LONG TERM...SHK AVIATION...TRA MARINE...TRA/SHK

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