The severe storm threat is fading, especially away from the coast, due to a lack of instability

Hi everyone. Just jumping in with a quick afternoon update on the forecast for severe weather in the Houston area. The bottom line is that the window for severe thunderstorms away from the immediate coast is closing quickly this afternoon.

What has happened is that rainfall near the coast and inland this morning has sapped the atmosphere of some of the instability needed to drive severe weather. (Such instability is necessary to promote the kinds of rising air that fuel strong thunderstorms). As a result the atmospheric environment is not really capable of supporting the kinds of supercells that produce tornadoes and other severe activity. We could still see a few isolated tornadoes this afternoon, but the threat is fading.

Severe thunderstorm threat shifts coastward. (NOAA)

In terms of precipitation, we’ve seen the heaviest rainfall so far along the coast today, near a warm front at the surface. A couple of inches have fallen and we’re likely to see additional accumulations over the next few hours with sporadic pulses of heavier rainfall. It is these coastal regions from Matagorda Bay to Galveston Bay and up toward Port Arthur that the greatest potential for strong thunderstorms lies. As this system continues to propagate to the east, the threat of heavy rainfall and storm activity, even along the coast, will diminish late this afternoon and evening.

12 thoughts on “The severe storm threat is fading, especially away from the coast, due to a lack of instability”

  1. So was all the hype on television the last two days worth it? We got lots of hard rain in Alvin, but not much else.

    • Definitely worth it! I’ve seen lots of people that cover severe weather across the country be surprised that this didn’t turn out as bad as they suspected it was going to be. In my opinion, I’d rather be worried and prepared than taken by surprise!

  2. For those of us who are fearful of strong storms the warnings from local TV stations is very unsettling. Please don’t use the weather as a source of “breaking news” that is meant to keep us on edge

    • I like the fact that SCW informs us of severe weather, but don’t like the broadcast weather stations hyping and getting almost hysterical about it. It gets to be very unsettling, especially for my wife.

  3. Hey, at least I got the storm drains in the yard cleaned out. There were a lot of acorns in the pipes.

  4. That was perfect timing for the update. I was just having to leave for a trip to the DMV and it was great timing to give me peace of mind. Love you guys.

  5. “Lack of stability” is kind of a double negative, but the weather and the world could use more of it.

  6. I picked up 2 inches in Sweeny. This is the first time I’ve seen standing water in my yard like this since May. Literally 6 months ago!

Comments are closed.