With the end of Winter and the beginning of Spring (meteorologically speaking) upon us, we look ahead to see what the months of March, April and May have in store for us. By the way the official start of astronomical Spring (Vernal Equinox) is March 20th in case you were wondering. So let’s get to the forecast shall we.
First up it appears that the El Nino which has been raging on since 2015 will continue to be strong through spring with weakening occurring by late spring and early summer.
This would lead us to believe that the weather pattern across the Southeast will continue to be active through March, April and May. Unfortunately an active weather pattern during the Spring will often times lead to an increase in severe weather outbreaks. The present El Nino is as strong as the 1997-1998 El Nino which is considered to be one of the strongest ever. That episode led to a very active severe weather season during the Spring of 1998 that lead to deadly tornadoes here in north Georgia during March and April, including the Hall/White County tornado as well as the Dunwoody tornado.
This is not to imply that this Spring will include devastating tornadoes, but the correlation is there between a strong El Nino and an increase in severe t-storms across the Southeast.
As far as what we can expect in terms of rain and temperatures here is what the folks at the Climate Prediction Center have published. Again with the strong El Nino present you would expect more rain and cooler temperatures and that is generally what they are forecasting although they are leaning a bit toward the equal chances category.
All in all I would say get ready for a wild ride the next few months as the affects of El Nino continue to be felt here in the Southeast!