Update: The National Weather Service has issued a red flag warning effective Monday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.
A red flag warning means that critical fire weather conditions are occurring now or will occur shortly.
Strong winds are forecast to be from the northwest at 20-30 mph with gusts to 35 mph, with low relative humidity from 15-25 percent. Rainfall is below normal for this time of year, so vegetation may be dry enough to support wildfires.
High temperatures are expected to be in the 50s and low 60s.
34 counties are in the warning area, including Denton, Dallas, and Tarrant. 14 additional counties to the east, including Collin County, are in a fire weather watch.
Any fire that develops could spread quickly.
Readers are advised to avoid outdoor fires and dispose of cigarettes properly.
Original post: The National Weather Service has issued a fire weather watch effective Monday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.
A fire weather watch means that critical fire weather conditions are forecast to occur.
Strong winds are forecast to be from the northwest at 25 mph with gusts to 35 mph, with low relative humidity from 15-25 percent. Rainfall is below normal for this time of year, so vegetation may be dry enough to support wildfires.
High temperatures are expected to be in the 50s and low 60s.
33 counties are in the watch area, including Denton, Dallas, and Tarrant.
Any fire that develops could spread quickly.
Readers are advised to avoid outdoor fires and dispose of cigarettes properly. Pay attention to local media for any red flag warnings.
Tuesday morning was a rude awakening for many Lewisville residents when strong storms moved through the area as a squall line. Strong winds tipped over a tractor-trailer in the parking lot of Walmart, waking the driver. Police said that driver was not injured, but Lewisville Fire Department did assist him in exiting the rig. Paramedics evaluated him for injuries. Down the street on FM 3040, a steeple and cupola were blown off a clock tower monument at Chapel Hill Apartments.
Lewisville emergency management coordinator Josh Roberts said there were also instances of downed trees and a few downed power lines, damage to some roofs in Creekside Mobile Home Park, and damage to some overhead doors. Most of the damage was in the southwest portion of the city.
At 3:46 a.m. that morning the National Weather Service issued a tornado warning due to radar-indicated rotation. Skywarn spotters were out around the county prior to the warning, but as far as we heard, no spotter was able to get eyes on any rotation in Lewisville. Roberts gave the order to turn on the outdoor warning sirens. Many residents reported that their cell phones turned on to warn them.
The National Weather Service did visit Lewisville the next day to perform a field survey to determine what happened. Roberts says their preliminary findings are that the damage was caused by straight-line winds with gusts of 60-70 mph.
Unfortunately, the city’s Citizen Alert reverse-911 system malfunctioned with regards to sending warnings to residents who had signed up for the service. The system is supposed to automatically send National Weather Service warnings via robo-dialed phone calls, and tornado warnings are a mandatory send that users cannot turn off. Even though the warning expired, and the storm had passed by 4:15 a.m., residents began receiving tornado warning calls after 5:15 a.m. Residents and Roberts were not happy about that glitch. “Obviously this is horrible timing, and please know that I consider the occurrence of this issue as unacceptable,” said Roberts. “The vendor has said that they've implemented a ‘fix’ but I've asked for specifics and have some scheduled discussions with them in the near future,” he added.
Roberts did say that the issue pointed out the necessity for residents to have multiple means of receiving warnings in the event of severe weather. The outdoor warning sirens are not intended to be loud enough to be heard inside every home. Setting up an All-Hazards Weather Radio in a place where it can be heard is a good way to get alerts. Many local media outlets also have apps that can deliver weather alerts.
Meteorologists are expecting a much-needed heavy rain event for North Texas to roll in Thursday and last through the weekend. The National Weather service issued a flash flood watch effective from 1 a.m. Friday morning until 1 a.m. Sunday morning for 38 counties in North Texas, including Denton, Dallas, Tarrant, Cooke, Wise, and Collin counties. Forecasters expect most of North Texas will get three to six inches of rain, with some locally heavy downpours of as much as 10 inches.
For Thursday, the forecast calls for possible showers and thunderstorms this morning, which chances increasing in the afternoon to 70%. As of 6:30 a.m., radar showed the storms west of our area along a line from Childress to Big Spring, which should allow for a dry morning commute. Skies will be mostly cloudy today, and highs will be in the upper 70s with winds from the southeast at 15-20 mph. There is an 80% chance of rain tonight, with possible heavy rainfall. Lows tonight will be in the upper 60s. Southeast winds will be at 15-20 mph dropping to 10-15 mph after midnight. Friday, rain chances increase to 90%. Saturday, the rain chance is 80%.
As of last Thursday, Denton County was in severe drought. An exceptionally dry summer followed a very wet May that brought flooding and a new record level for Lewisville Lake. About 47% of the State of Texas is currently in drought stages 1-4. Since January 1, the DFW area has received 39.1 inches of rain- nearly 10 inches above normal for the year, but the last several months have been dry. Lewisville Lake sits at 521.15 feet, or about 10 inches below full conservation pool.
National Weather Service update from Thursday morning:
Here is the latest information on the heavy rainfall expected to move into North Texas starting later today. It appears that we will have at least two rounds of heavy rainfall...one tonight...and another late Friday night into Saturday. At this time it appears that most of North Texas will pick up 3 to 6 inches of rain. A FLASH FLOOD WATCH is in effect for most of the area. Keep in mind that there are likely to be small bands or pockets of very heavy rainfall...as much as 10 inches of rain in some areas. These will be very localized and extremely difficult to pin down an exact location. Stay tuned for the latest forecast information throughout the day.
Monday, the combination of low winds and high temperature will possibly create ozone levels in the air that are unhealthy for sensitive groups. It is an ozone action day. Active children and adults, and people with lung disease, such as asthma, should reduce prolonged or heavy exertion outdoors. You can help out by doing your best to reduce pollution today. You can find some tips here.
After stalling along the coast today for a few hours, Tropical Storm Bill is making steady northward progress this evening. The bands of intense tropical rainfall of 2 to 4 inches per hour will begin to spread into the region from the south later tonight and into Wednesday. The central Texas area will start seeing this heavy rainfall after midnight and it may last through Wednesday morning. The north Texas area, including the DFW Metroplex will see this heavy rainfall spread into the area during the morning hours, and it may last into Wednesday evening.
Here is the forecast path:
The remains of T.S. Bill will continue to lift northward into portions of north/central TX on Wednesday. With the widespread moisture, heavy rain additional river flooding and flash flooding is expected...especially along and east of the I-35 corridor. In addition--there will be a threat for a few very brief tornadoes. While brief...these tornadoes will still be capable of very fine corridors of damage. Make sure that you have multiple ways to receive warning information.
Information is from the National Weather Service and the National Hurricane Prediction Center.
Here's an update from the National Weather Service:
One more soggy day today, but a major weather pattern change is in the forecast. A cold front will move through tonight and bring much drier air into the region behind it which will result in an end to the relentless rains. An upper level high will build into the region Monday and keep the chance of rain low through the next week.
The region along and west of I-35/I-35E is starting the process of drying out. Scattered showers and thunderstorms southeast of a Sulphur Springs to Rockwall line will continue to move southeast through this evening...exiting the region before midnight.
Texas Storm Chasers puts the risk of thunderstorms tonight around 1 a.m. to 2 a.m., with 1-2 inches of rain, and possible large hail and damaging wind.
National Weather Service Update: "Widespread rainfall is expected again overnight tonight across North and Central Texas. There will be two different sources for these showers and storms. The first will be from a complex of storms that will move into the western portions of North and Central Texas tonight and come through the area fairly quickly. Some of these storms may be strong, but severe weather is not expected. The second area of concern will be for areas along and north of the I-20 corridor where storms are expected to repeatedly develop and "train" over the same general area for several hours. Heavy rain and flooding is again expected tonight for this area."
Update - 11:02 a.m.: A Tornado Watch has been issued for 35 counties in North Central Texas, including Denton County until 6 p.m. today. This means that conditions are favorable for the possible development of tornadoes. If you are going to be outdoors today, have plans at all times to get to shelter quickly if needed. Make sure that you have a means of staying informed of the situation with the weather. Stay tuned.
Original Post: Today will bring yet another round of thunderstorms and unwelcome rains to add to our flood situation in North Texas.
According to the National Weather Service, storms should enter our area after 1 p.m. Large hail, damaging winds, and even tornadoes are possible. There is already a tornado warning at this hour for an area just west of Abilene, where a line of storms is building up and heading our way.
Denton County is at high risk for floods due to saturated soil, swollen creeks and rivers, and full lakes. We are under a flash flood watch. In recent days, there have been numerous reports of cars getting washed away after attempting to drive through water. There was even a rescue in Lewisville on Saturday night.