Beau Dodson's WeatherTalk Blog

June 29, 2015: A few storms in the forecast. Wet week?

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This forecast update covers far southern Illinois, far southeast Missouri, and far western Kentucky. See the coverage map on the right side of the blog.

Remember that weather evolves.  Check back frequently for updates, especially during active weather.

The forecast numbers below may vary a bit across the region.  These are the averages.


Sunday night – Becoming cloudy.  A 40%-60% chance for showers and thunderstorms.  South winds at 5-10 mph.
My confidence in this part of the forecast verifying is high
Should I cancel my outdoor plans?  Monitor radars as the night wears on.
Is severe weather expected?  Some severe storms possible over our far northwest counties.  
What is the chance for precipitation? 40%-60%
What impact is expected?  Lightning is the main concern locally.


Monday –  A lot of clouds.  A 20% chance for thunderstorms.  A little warmer.  Highs in the 80’s with southwest winds at 5-10 mph.
My confidence in this part of the forecast verifying is  high
Should I cancel my outdoor plans?  
Could be some storms around.  Not a washout.  Widely scattered.
Is severe weather expected?  Small risk for a strong storm.
What is the chance for precipitation?  20%
What impact is expected?  A couple of storms could produce heavy downpours, gusty winds, and small hail.

Monday night –  Partly cloudy.  A 20% chance for a thunderstorm.  Lows in the 60’s with west and southwest winds at 5-10 mph.
My confidence in this part of the forecast verifying is high
Should I cancel my outdoor plans?
 Might be some evening precipitation.  Monitor radars.
Is severe weather expected?  A couple of evening storms could be strong.  Severe storm risk is very low.
What is the chance for precipitation?  30% in the evening.
What impact is expected?  No major impacts.  If a storm remains then lightning.


Tuesday –  Partly sunny.  Pleasant day for summer.  Just a slight chance for a thunderstorm.  Less than 20% chance at any given location.  Highs in the 80’s with southwest winds at 10 mph.
My confidence in this part of the forecast verifying is high
Should I cancel my outdoor plans?  
Is severe weather expected?  No
What is the chance for precipitation?  Less than 20% at any given location.  Two in ten chance.

What impact is expected?  If a storm forms then lightning is the main concern.

Wednesday into Friday – Thunderstorms likely at times.  Locally heavy rain.  Monitor updates.

Unsettled Wednesday into Sunday with several chances for showers and heavy thunderstorms.  Monitor updates.  MCS season is here.

Sunrise and Sunset Times – Click Here



Don’t forget to check out the Southern Illinois Weather Observatory web-site for weather maps, tower cams, scanner feeds, radars, and much more!  Click here


An explanation of what is happening in the atmosphere over the coming days…


1.  Some strong storms tonight (Sunday night) over our northwest counties.  Monitor updates.
2.  Unsettled week with multiple chances for rain.
3.  Watching Wednesday/Thursday/Friday for a heavy rain event for some of our counties
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A disturbance arrives tonight and on Monday.  This will trigger some showers and thunderstorms.  A few storms could be severe over our far northwest counties in southeast Missouri and southern Illinois.  Severe weather parameters are better to our west and northwest vs our local area.  I will, as always, keep an eye on it.   Monitor the live thread on Facebook.

There will be at least some chance for scattered showers and storms all week.

Smaller chances on Tuesday vs Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday.  Decent chances those last three days.

The focus for a heavy rain event might unfold Wednesday into Thursday.  A stronger system will approach from the northwest.  This system could cause a large thunderstorm complex or two to form in the region.  If this happens then we will have to think about some heavy rain totals.

The focus might be on Wednesday afternoon into Thursday morning.  Again, still some time to nail down the details.

The exact track of the systems will need to be fine tuned.  Will the focus of the heavy rain threat be over our northern or southern counties…questions like that.  Still several days to monitor.

If you like the current temperature and air-mass then you are in luck.  It will stick around through the upcoming week.  There will be some fluctuations in temperatures, but nothing like what happened over the last few weeks.



This section of the blog is speculative forecast information.  Because it is past the range of what meteorologists can forecast accurately, it should be considered speculation.  Anything past day 5 is considered a long range forecast.

1.  Fourth of July storms or nice weather?
2.  River flooding concerns
3.  As promised, cooler than normal likely over coming 2 weeks.  Cooler is relative for July.

Many of you are asking me about the Fourth of July weekend.  And, like a good weatherman…I keep looking ahead through the looking glass.  I keep coming up with unsettled weather for Friday.  Saturday remains a bit of a question mark.  Some data indicates rain and some data indicates mostly dry.

Showers and thunderstorms could be an issue this coming weekend.  But, there is still some time for adjustments.

Disturbances moving through this northwest flow will likely arrive every day or every other day.  This is going to be a bit of  a pain to forecast.  Always is.

The best chance for widespread showers and storms over the coming week will arrive on Wednesday and Thursday.  As mentioned above.

Then the front may stall out.  This is a concern.  If the front stalls out then disturbances will ride along the front.  This could be the focus for locally heavy rainfall.  Flash flooding would be a concern.  Monitor updates.


River flooding continues to be an issue in our region.  Recent heavy rainfall isn’t helping our cause.  More heavy rain could cause additional problems.



Historically a pattern like this means multiple rounds of thunderstorms.  Some storms could be heavy.  I have concerns that the rivers are so high.  This will need to be monitored.




I also set up a storm tracking page with additional links (use during active weather for quick reference)
Storm Tracking Tool Page

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How much precipitation should we expect over the next few days?

As we enter the late spring and summer months, keep in mind that slow moving thunderstorms can always produce locally heavy rainfall totals.  This is no secret to all of you who are farmers.  Your neighbors could pick up 1″ of rain from a thunderstorm, meanwhile you are sitting on dry ground.  Forecasting exact rainfall totals during this time of the year can be tricky, at best.

Sunday night and Monday we will have additional scattered showers and thunderstorms.  A few spots could pick up 0.25″-0.50″ of rain.  Many areas will pick up less than that.  Some will miss out entirely.

Rainfall chances increase dramatically by Wednesday and Thursday.  Heavy rain is a good bet with amounts greater than 1-3″ in some counties.  Still some time to monitor the placement of the best precipitation chances.  An MCS will be possible.  A complex of thunderstorms.

Here is the official rainfall forecast for the week.  Keep in mind there could be locally heavier amounts.  Always a good bet this time of the year.


What is a Mesoscale Convective System?  Large thunderstorm complexes that form in the late spring and summer months.  Here is a great educational lesson on this topic…click here


Can we expect severe thunderstorms over the next 24 to 48 hours?  Remember that a severe thunderstorm is defined as a thunderstorm that produces 58 mph winds or higher, quarter size hail or larger, and/or a tornado.

Thunderstorm threat level is a marginal TWO for Monday.  Maybe a couple of strong storms.

Monday Severe Weather Outlook –  Scattered storms possible.  Not expecting them to become severe.

Tuesday Severe Weather Outlook –  Severe Weather Is Not Anticipated
Wednesday Severe Weather Outlook –  Thunderstorms possible.  Heavy rain possible Wednesday night.
Thursday Severe Weather Outlook – Thunderstorms possible.  Heavy rain possible.
Friday Severe Weather Outlook – Thunderstorms possible
Saturday Severe Weather Outlook –  Severe Weather Is Not Anticipated




A couple of storms possible on Monday.

Heavy rain possible Wednesday night or Thursday/Friday.

Rivers will continue to remain high over the coming week.  Check the lake and river stages for details.



Here are the current river stage forecasts.   You can click your state and then the dot for your location.  It will bring up the full forecast and hydrograph.

Click Here For River Stage Forecasts…

Here are some current forecast hydrographs.  These will be updated each day with new information.

Smithland Lock and Dam

Paducah, Kentucky Forecast Stage

Cairo, Illinois

Current Temperatures Around The Local Area


We have regional radars and local city radars – if a radar does not seem to be updating then try another one. Occasional browsers need their cache cleared. You may also try restarting your browser. That usually fixes the problem. Occasionally we do have a radar go down. That is why I have duplicates. Thus, if one fails then try another one.

If you have any problems then please send me an email


We also have a new national interactive radar – you can view that radar by clicking here.

Local interactive city radars include St Louis, Mt Vernon, Evansville, Poplar Bluff, Cape Girardeau, Marion, Paducah, Hopkinsville, Memphis, Nashville, Dyersburg, and all of eastern Kentucky – these are interactive radars. Local city radars – click here

NOTE:  Occasionally you will see ground clutter on the radar (these are false echoes).  Normally they show up close to the radar sites – including Paducah.

Regional Radar – Click on radar to take you our full radar page.


Regional Radar


Live Lightning Data – zoom and pan:  Click here
Live Lightning Data with sound (click the sound button on the left side of the page): Click here

I also set up a storm tracking page with additional links (use during active weather for quick reference)
Storm Tracking Tool Page


Current WARNINGS (a warning means take action now). Click on your county to drill down to the latest warning information. Keep in mind that there can be a 2-3 minute delay in the updated warning information.

I strongly encourage you to use a NOAA Weather Radio or warning cell phone app for the most up to date warning information. Nothing is faster than a NOAA weather radio.


Color shaded counties are under some type of watch, warning, advisory, or special weather statement.  Click your county to view the latest information.

Missouri Warnings

Illinois Warnings

Kentucky Warnings


Here is the official 6-10 day and 8-14 day temperature and precipitation outlook.  Check the date stamp at the top of each image (so you understand the time frame).

The forecast maps below are issued by the Weather Prediction Center (NOAA).

The latest 8-14 day temperature and precipitation outlook.  Note the dates are at the top of the image.  These maps DO NOT tell you how high or low temperatures or precipitation will be.  They simply give you the probability as to whether temperatures or precipitation will be above or below normal.


Who do you trust for your weather information and who holds them accountable?

I have studied weather in our region since the late 1970’s.  I have 37 years of experience in observing our regions weather patterns.  My degree is in Broadcast Meteorology from Mississippi State University and an Associate of Science (AS).  I am currently working on my Bachelor’s Degree in Geoscience.  Just need to finish two Spanish classes!

I am a member of the American Meteorological Society.  I am a NOAA Weather-Ready Nation Ambassador.  And, I am the Meteorologist for McCracken County Emergency Management.

I own and operate the Southern Illinois Weather Observatory.

There is a lot of noise on the internet.  A lot of weather maps are posted without explanation.  Over time you should learn who to trust for your weather information.

My forecast philosophy is simple and straight forward.

  • Communicate in simple terms
  • To be as accurate as possible within a reasonable time frame before an event
  • Interact with you on Twitter, Facebook, and the blog
  • Minimize the “hype” that you might see on television or through other weather sources
  • Push you towards utilizing wall-to-wall LOCAL TV coverage during severe weather events

I am a recipient of the Mark Trail Award, WPSD Six Who Make A Difference Award, Kentucky Colonel, and the Caesar J. Fiamma” Award from the American Red Cross.  In 2009 I was presented with the Kentucky Office of Highway Safety Award.  I was recognized by the Kentucky House of Representatives for my service to the State of Kentucky leading up to several winter storms and severe weather outbreaks.

If you click on the image below you can read the Kentucky House of Representatives Resolution.


I am also President of the Shadow Angel Foundation which serves portions of western Kentucky and southern Illinois.


Many of my graphics are from – a great resource for weather data, model data, and more




You can sign up for my AWARE email by clicking here I typically send out AWARE emails before severe weather, winter storms, or other active weather situations. I do not email watches or warnings. The emails are a basic “heads up” concerning incoming weather conditions.


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