Commonwealth Journal

January 29, 2013

Pulaski will likely be greeted by storms, wind Wednesday morning

By HEATHER TOMLINSON, CJ Staff Writer
Commonwealth Journal

Somerset —  

After the bitter cold of recent days, Tuesday’s 60-degree plus weather was a welcome respite from the chill.
Get ready to pay the piper, Pulaski County.
Early today, storms will be rolling in and likely lasting until about noon, according to the National Weather Service (NWS) offices in Jackson, Ky.
Powerful winds are part of the package — and yes, the “t” word has also come into play.
“We’re expecting a line of storms to be approaching from the west towards dawn — about 7 a.m., it may be a little bit after that,” said NWS forecaster Pete Georgerian on Tuesday. “The main threat will be damaging straight-line winds. Also, a brief isolated spin-up tornado along the line cannot be ruled out.”
That doesn’t mean a summertime-style twister is certainly headed this way. However “If we get a strong line of thunderstorms with the winds we’re expecting, sometimes you can get embedded weak tornadoes. The pattern is conducive for that; that’s why we’ve mentioned it as a possibility.”
He added, “It won’t take much to brings those strong winds down to the ground,” and that the winds would likely be as high as 60 miles per hour or greater.
There’s about a 15 percent chance of these damaging winds hitting between 6 a.m. and noon, noted Georgerian. That’s a “lower-end severe threat” — higher-end threats are usually listed as a 30 percent chance, he said.
“Because of the time of day it’s coming in, it’s an advantage for us because we’re not going to be dealing with heating,” said Georgerian.
Additionally, heavy rainfall could lead to flash flooding, thanks to an earthen floor that’s already wet.
“The ground is really saturated following the rounds of rain we’ve had the last few weeks,” he said. “Also, the ground was frozen, then had a quick that. Anything that falls will run off easily, so there’s some possibility of flash flooding. Low-lying areas will be the most susceptible.”
Strong storms will be felt all over the Commonwealth, with Kentucky Emergency Management officials projecting the worst to have hit over the night already. Winds are expected to subside in the east tonight, according to the Associated Press.
The weather gets weirder later on as the NWS has a slight chance of rain — and possibly even snow showers — could occur over the night Wednesday, then after a breezy Thursday, snow is considered “likely” late Thursday night. Friday is expected to be mostly sunny but cold, with a high of 31 degrees, and then snow is a possibility again on Sunday, with a 20 percent chance of precipitation.