Athens, GA Weather: Irma’s Impact on North Georgia

Monday’s Forecast

100% Rain and Wind
High: 65°F
Low: 57°F

Water vapor satellite imagery showing the large storm of Irma pushing to the north towards Georgia. Image Credit: NOAA

Now is the time to get ready for Hurricane Irma! Rain and wind will be the main story tonight and throughout the day tomorrow. Governor Nathan Deal declared a state of emergency for the entire state of Georgia today. The University of Georgia is closed on Monday and Tuesday. Best to be prepared! This post is specifically for Hurricane Irma and what we can expect over the next 24 to 48 hours. We’ll break down what you need to know and what you might expect below!

Quick Forecast:

Tonight: cloudy and breezy. 60% chance for scattered showers mainly after midnight. Northeast winds at 15-25 mph with gusts near 30 mph. Low near 57°F.

Monday: cloudy and windy. 100% chance for rain. Sustained winds of 35-45 mph. Gusts near 70 mph. High near 65°F.

Monday Night: cloudy and windy. 80% chance for rain. Sustained winds of 15-25 mph. Gusts near 30 mph. Low near 61°F.

Tropical Storm Warning

A tropical storm warning has been issued for all of Central Georgia and includes parts of North Georgia including the cities of Athens, Atlanta, and Rome. It does not include our far northeastern counties. It does not include Toccoa or Gainesville. A tropical storm warning means tropical storm conditions are expected in the next 24 hours. Tropical storm force winds are 39-73 mph. Winds this strong can and will cause power outages across a good bit of the Peach State.

Potential wind gusts across the state of Georgia. Image Credit: NOAA

Flash Flood Watch

A flash flood watch is in effect for all of North and Central Georgia for the potential to see 3″-7″ of rain through Tuesday afternoon. Some rain bands can produce heavy rain in a quick period of time that could result in flash flooding. Remember to turn around, don’t drown if you encounter roads/streets under water.

Potential rainfall totals for Georgia. Image Credit: NOAA

Latest On Hurricane Irma

Hurricane Irma made landfall over the Keys as a Category 4 and then on Marco Island as a Category 3. It is now a Category 2 hurricane and will continue to weaken as it travels over land and encounters wind shear. It will bring about 10-15 foot storm surge in parts of SW Florida this evening as the center pushes to the north. Going to be a long night for Florida.

Breakdown:

Tonight

Waves of showers will slowly push towards the north overnight. Not expecting anything severe during the overnight hours. Winds will likely remain sustained at 15-25 mph. Gusts near 30 mph.

Bands of light showers likely tonight. Image Credit: NAM 3km via Weatherbell

Monday Morning (5 AM – 10 AM):

Waves of showers will slowly increase in coverage and intensity. Winds will begin to pick up a little as Irma slowly inches closer to the Peach State. Expect more rounds of steady moderate rain. Temperatures in the upper 50s. Winds sustained at 20 mph with gusts near 30-40 mph.

Rain will increase in coverage and intensity late in the morning hours. Image Credit: Weatherbell

Monday Late Morning/Afternoon (10 AM- 5 PM):

Rain will continue and the potential for flash flooding will be possible. Winds will continue to increase a little. At this point in the game, we can’t rule out a few isolated tornadoes. I think the best threat for tornadoes will be south and east of here, but we’ll have to watch for any quick spin-ups from Irma.

European hinting that the strong wind gust potential will be pushing northwards by the late afternoon hours. Image Credit: Weatherbell

Monday Evening (5 PM – 10 PM):

The worst of the weather will likely occur in the evening hours as the center of Irma will be closest to us. Some of the models (pictured below) indicating the potential to see near hurricane force wind gusts. Is it possible? I think it could be. Is it likely? Probably not. I think the model is exaggerating on the wind gusts. Regardless, this is the time where we could see power outages as wind gusts could climb around 60 mph. The ground will be saturated, so wind gusts of 40 to 50 mph could easily knock down a few trees. These strong bands from Irma could also produce a spin-up tornado. Something to watch. Threat is low, but there.

Monday Night:

Late evening through 2 a.m. EDT is when we’ll likely see the heaviest rain bands and strongest winds. After 2 a.m. EDT Tuesday morning, bulk of the heaviest rain will try to push off to the north and west. Scattered showers still possible with winds lowering around 15-25 mph with gusts near 30 mph.

A few showers possible early Tuesday morning. Image Credit: Weatherbell

Tuesday Morning:

By Tuesday morning, scattered showers will still be possible, but the strongest winds will be over with. The rain will slowly push out by the afternoon hours and the threat for severe weather will come to an end. At this point, clean-up efforts will likely take place to restore power in spots that lose it. Temperatures will climb into the low 70s for high temperatures Tuesday.

Weather Video of the Day

Here’s a weather update from our National Weather Service Office in Peachtree City regarding Hurricane Irma.

About Matt Daniel

Matt is a graduate from the University of Georgia with a bachelor of science degree in Geography and Atmospheric Sciences. At the University of Georgia, Matt also earned a certificate in the Music Business program. Matt has interned with the National Weather Service in Peachtree City, ABC 33/40 with James Spann in Birmingham, Alabama, 13 WMAZ in Macon, GA with Ben Jones, and worked with WNEG-TV behind the scenes with Eric Elliot. Matt Daniel is currently the weekend meteorologist for the CBS station 13WMAZ in Macon, Georgia. He also works as a freelance Weather Producer at CNN. Matt writes weather/climate stories for the nationally acclaimed website, EarthSky.org and also contributed to articles via MSN Weather. He participated and played trumpet for the Redcoat Marching Band, and was also a member of the Volleyball band in 2006-2008. Matt was the President of the local student chapter of the University of Georgia American Meteorological Society (AMS) during the 2013-2014 year. He was also the Vice President of the UGA AMS chapter for the 2012-2013 season, and is currently an active member of the national American Meteorological Society. Matt released his solo album (yes, he writes music too!) on August 18, 2015. You can listen and purchase his album here.

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