Good morning, West Alabama! It is Friday July 5, 2024. I hope everyone had a fun and safe 4th of July.

A HEAT ADVISORY is in effect across the state until 9:00 tonight. The heat index could soar near 109 in some spots. So, limit your time outdoors, take frequent breaks and stay hydrated.

Thunder is rumbling across the area this morning. Some 400 customers were left without power in Tuscaloosa County due to the passage of a storm just after 8:00am this morning.

Scattered to numerous thunderstorms are in the forecast for mainly this afternoon, but the day should not be a complete washout. According to the National Weather Service in Birmingham a few of the storms could produce some wind gusts upwards of 60mph, torrential rainfall and frequent lightning.

Weather radar this morning shows the bulk of the strong storms to the north of Alabama, but more storms are expected to form to our west and move into the state later today.

Tornadoes are not expected but there could be one or more severe thunderstorm warnings so download our app to stay up to date.

READ MOREEarly July Heat Index Values Continue for West Alabama 

The Forecast:

Showers and thunderstorms likely, mainly after 10am. Partly sunny, with a high near 92. Heat index values as high as 105. West wind around 5 mph. Chance of precipitation is 70%. New rainfall amounts between a quarter and half of an inch possible.
Showers and thunderstorms likely, mainly before 10pm. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 74. Northwest wind around 5 mph becoming calm in the evening. Chance of precipitation is 60%. New rainfall amounts of less than a tenth of an inch, except higher amounts possible in thunderstorms.
A 40 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms, mainly after 1pm. Mostly sunny, with a high near 91. Northwest wind around 5 mph becoming northeast in the morning.
Saturday Night
Partly cloudy, with a low around 72. North wind around 5 mph becoming calm in the evening.
A 30 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms after 1pm. Mostly sunny, with a high near 93. Calm wind becoming northeast around 5 mph.
Sunday Night
A 20 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 73.
Showers and thunderstorms likely, mainly after 1pm. Partly sunny, with a high near 92. Chance of precipitation is 60%.
Monday Night
A 30 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms before 1am. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 72.
Remainder of Next Week:
A Shower and thunderstorm chance each day. Highs near 90 and overnight lows in the low to mid 70s.

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Topping the News:

Fireworks filled the skies across Alabama last night, including downtown Tuscaloosa's River District. A huge crowd turned out for children's activities, DJ and Tuscaloosa Symphony concerts and the concluding fireworks display that was a delight to all at the Mercedes Amp and in the surrounding area.

Governor Ivey's promised West Alabama Corridor Project will get a public hearing next Thursday in Demopolis. The event will be hosted by the Alabama Department of Transportation and the project's general contractor Brassfield and Goree at Wallace State Community Center at 5 p.m.

The governor made the near $1 billion project a critical part of her "State of the State" address to the legislature earlier this year.
The project will add lanes to U.S. Highway 43 and State Route 69 to provide a four-lane divided highway from Thomasville to Moundville. That will make the highway 4-land from Tuscaloosa to Mobile.
Lawmakers in other sections of the state opposed the project because funding come from Rebuild Alabama with no federal match. Others say the money should go to improvements on I65. Tuscaloosa Rep. Chris England has stated a project like this is exactly what Rebuild Alabama is all about.

You may have noticed the water level at Lake Harris is lower than normal. A contractor for the City of Tuscaloosa is conducting routine maintenance on the lake that is a backup for city water from Lake Tuscaloosa.

The public can continue to use the lake. However, warning signs have been posted stating that the lake's level has been reduced five feet to facilitate the maintenance work. It warns swimmers to not dive from the cliffs due to risk of severe injury or death from the shallower water.

Republican State Senator Garlan Gudger (Cullman) was injured in a jet ski accident on Smith Lake yesterday. He was flown to UAB where he is currently in the Intensive Critical Care Unit (ICU).

Gudger underwent surgery for internal bleeding, but doctors report he should make a ull recovery.

The father of Jasper youth Destinee Sides has texted Birmingham TV station WVTM to say his daughter is showing signs of recovery after a UTV accident. She had surgery Tuesday and is beginning to improve according to her father's message.

The 11-year-old was riding in a side-by-side UTV with her sister last Friday when she was ejected and the four-wheeler landed on top of her.

Hurricane Beryle has left catastrophic destruction in its path. This morning it made landfall on the Yucatan Peninsula as a powerful category 2 hurricane.
According to the National Hurricane Center, Beryle is the first major hurricane to form in the North Atlantic in June. It is also the strongest storm on record in the month of June.
Its next target is northern Mexico along the Border with Texas.
Beryle will not directly impact the Alabama Gulf Coast but will increase the rip current threat and produce high waves through the weekend.

Topping Sports News:

Alabama Softball Coach is already excited about the coming season, and he posted a holiday message about a specific series that is sure to draw national attention.
“Here’s a little holiday scoop for all the softball fans on X,” Murphy wrote in a post to X, (formerly known as Twitter). “OU will visit the Rhoads (house) for the first time in the (regular) season April 11-13.”
Oklahoma and Texas are two softball powerhouses and, as of this past Monday, are now members of the Southeastern Conference.
OU just defeated Texas for the Women's College World Series Championship, the Sooner's fourth in a row.

From UA Athletics:  Alabama head coach Mic Potter announced the addition of three highly touted transfers today. Kennedy Carroll, Ryan Flynn and Julia Sánchez Morales will join the women's golf program for the 2024-25 campaign. The trio joins a signing class that includes incoming freshman Molly Brown Davidson from Springville, Ala.

Carroll was the 2024 Southland Conference Student-Athlete of the Year at Augusta College. Flynn was named 2023 WAC Freshman of the Year and was a First Team All-WAC selection. Sánchez Morales is from Sotogrande, Spain and was a member of the Spanish Federation National Team.

Enjoy the weekend. 

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