It is Thursday April 25, 2024.

The 2024 Hurricane Season does not get underway until June 1. But there has already been some activity detected in the Eastern Atlantic. An area of low pressure located about 900 miles northwest of the Cabo Verde Islands has been producing a small but persistent area of showers and thunderstorms, but no further development is expected.

While pre-season storms are not unheard of, they are considered fairly rare -- occurring on average every 4-5 years. The last May tropical system was Tropical Storm Alberto which formed on May 19, 2012.

The earliest recorded tropical system to form pre-season was January 3, 1938. It became a full-fledged hurricane.

The moral of the story is to be aware that Mother Nature does not go by a calendar. Also, be aware that being some 250 miles and more than four hours from the Gulf Coast gives us little protection from the impacts of inland moving tropical weather here in West Alabama

Hurricanes have been known to hold together all the way through the state bringing damaging winds, torrential rains and flooding as well as quick spin-up tornadoes to our area.

Colorado State University already has, and NOAA is expected to soon forecast a significant, above average hurricane season.

We will chat more about tropical weather as we move toward the calendar beginning of the 2024 season.

The Forecast:

A 20 percent chance of showers after 1pm. Sunny, with a high near 82. East wind around 5 mph becoming west in the afternoon.

Mostly cloudy, with a low around 61. Northeast wind around 5 mph becoming southeast after midnight.
Mostly sunny, with a high near 84. South wind 5 to 15 mph.
Friday Night
Mostly cloudy, with a low around 65. South wind 10 to 15 mph.
Partly sunny, with a high near 83. Breezy, with a south wind 15 to 20 mph.
Saturday Night
Partly cloudy, with a low around 64.

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Topping the News:

There is positive response for Stan Pate's "Encore" mixed-use development coming from Tuscaloosa City Hall. The City Council will not be presented Stan Pate's request for more than $65 million in tax abatements for the project planned for the old McFarland Mall site until May 7. However, the project is already getting a thumbs up for individual council members and Mayor Walt Maddox.
Both Maddox and Pate call the proposed incentives "risk-free" - the city would not give Pate and his team any cash for the project nor issue a bond to help finance it.

Next month workers at the Vance Mercedes Benz plant will vote on joining the United Auto Workers Union. The push for and against the union is ongoing and the intensity will only increase as the vote approaches.

Employees against the union are hesitant to identify themselves for fear of being targeted by the union. Pro-union employees believe a union contract will make employment at the Tuscaloosa County automaker more attractive.

Gov. Ivey has yet again restated her opposition to the UAW organizing Mercedes and the state's other non-union auto plants. In a written statement Ivey claimed the union is not interested in what is best for Alabama workers and is more interested in getting Alabama worker's money into the UAW bank account.

Alabama has declined to participate in the summer feeding program for children with food insecurity, but the Tuscaloosa City School System will. TCS will provide breakfast and lunch during the summer at sites and times to be announced later.

Alabama is one of 15 states not participating the summer   feeding program that provides EBT benefits for children 18and under. Gov. Ivey claims the state didn't get information on the program soon enough.

City of Centreville Water department crews spent last night repairing a water leak in the Bibb County system. The leak impacted residents along Highway 25 between Gary Springs Road and Riverbend Road.

A second bond hearing for former Crimson Tide Basketball player Darius Miles resulting from the January 2023 fatal shooting of a young woman was scheduled for yesterday afternoon. It has now been delayed until June17.

Miles and his childhood friend Michael Davis remain in Tuscaloosa County Jail charged with Capital Murder for the death of 23-year-old Jamea Harris during an exchange of gunfire on a side street from University Boulevard.
Evidence has surfaced that has raised questions about who actually instigated the incident. Two witnesses have since died.

A multi-vehicle crash on Lurleen Wallace Boulevard near Embassy Suites closed down the roadway for some time last night.

TPD reports three vehicles were involved resulting in three minor injuries.

Longtime news anchor at ABC 3340 Pam Huff has announced her retirement. The 47-year veteran broadcast journalist made the announcement on the station's 5:00pm newscast Wednesday.

Huff publicly battled and beat cancer, and in her retirement announcement, thanked viewer for offering “words of encouragement.”

Her retirement is effective May 24.

Topping the News:
The NFL Draft is scheduled for tonight in Detroit. The draft has had a SEC tint to it for some time. 17 Consecutive drafts have had more players selected from the SEC than from any other conference.
Tonight's TV coverage on ESPN will include now College Game Day analyst Nick Saban who will have more than a passing interest in the event.
90 Alabama players were drafted from 2012 through 2021 and from 2014 through 2023, tied the most in SEC history for a 10-year period.
Analysts predict Alabama will have at least eight players chosen in this year's draft, which would tie the 10-year draft record again.
The draft will run three days.

The No. 18 Alabama baseball team will be in Oxford tonight through Saturday for a series with Ole Miss. The first two matchups in Oxford are slated for a 6:30 p.m. first pitch followed by a 2 p.m. start in the finale. Games one and three will be broadcast nationally, first on ESPNU for Thursday followed by SEC Network on Saturday. The Friday contest is set to air on SEC Network+ and the Crimson Tide Sports Network.

The Tennessee Lady Vols (35-8, 14-4 SEC) will be in T-Town this weekend for the "Power of Pin" softball series with Alabama (32-12, 11-7 SEC). Friday and Saturday game begin at 6:00p.m. and Sunday's game will have a 1:00p.m. first pitch.

From UA Athletics: The Alabama women's golf team was one of 12 teams selected to compete in the 2024 NCAA Women's Golf Regionals, announced Wednesday afternoon. The Crimson Tide earned the No. 7 seed in the Cle Elum Regional in Cle Elum, Wash. which will take place at the par 72, 6,306-yard Tumble Creek Club, from May 6-8.With this year's selection, the Crimson Tide will make its 18th consecutive regional appearance under head coach Mic Potter and its 25th appearance in the event overall.

Have a thrilling Thursday and ROLL TIDE!!!

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