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National Weather at 125pm January 12 2005


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Heavy rain lower Midwest to Deep South Thursday

1:27 P.M. ET 1/12/2005


Sr. Meteorologist, The Weather Channel





Much colder air will sweep into the Midwest Thursday, igniting lake-effect snow squalls downwind of Lakes Superior and Michigan as the day goes on. Before that happens, however, heavy rain and thunderstorms along the leading edge of the cold air (cold front) will move steadily eastward through the Lakes and lower Midwest, ending the day in eastern Ohio and eastern Kentucky. Ahead of the front, temperatures will be unseasonably warm, some 20 degrees above mid-January means. A different story behind the front where temperatures will tumble throughout the day, or at best, struggle to hold steady. Temperatures in North Dakota and northern Minnesota, aided and abetted by gusty winds, will remain below zero.



Thunderstorms and downpours will rumble through the Deep South and Tennessee tomorrow, trundling eastward with a cold front. Drenching rains will spread from the Mississippi Valley early in the morning to eastern Tennessee, Alabama, northwest Georgia, and the central Gulf Coast by evening. Severe storms may threaten areas along and near the Gulf Coast. Meanwhile, Texas and Oklahoma should remain dry; the Carolinas, Florida, and southeast Georgia should see only scattered or isolated showers. High temperatures are forecast to range from near seasonal norms west of the Mississippi to well above in the Southeast. That suggests highs in the 40s in northern Oklahoma, the 70s and 80s on the Florida Peninsula.



Gusty southerly winds and unseasonable warmth will be the hallmark of the day in the Northeast tomorrow. Isolated showers may pop up here and there, but significant rain should hold off until late in the day, and even then it should dampen only West Virginia and the far western parts of New York and Pennsylvania. The only wintry precipitation in the region could be a little sleet or freezing drizzle in the morning in northern Maine. Temperatures, meanwhile, are expected to soar to levels 15-30 degrees above mid-winter averages with highs ranging from the 30s in northern Maine to the 70s in southeast Virginia.



Precipitation in the West tomorrow will be limited to scattered snow showers over the interior Northwest, southern Montana and the northern Rockies. Arctic air parked east of the Rockies will lead to a broad temperature range over region, with highs ranging from 10 to 20 below zero in northeast Montana to the 60s in southwest Arizona and parts of Southern California.

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