National Weather Service United States Department of Commerce

Heavy Rainfall Along the Texas Gulf Coast; Monsoon Conditions in the Southwest and Great Basin

A tropical disturbance moving onshore of the Texas Gulf Coast will bring heavy rainfall and a threat of flash and urban flooding from the Corpus Christi to Houston vicinity Thursday. A flash flood threat will exist Thursday as monsoonal moisture increases over the Southwest into the eastern Great Basin. Strong thunderstorms may impact a areas from the central Plains into the Upper Midwest. Read More >

The National Weather Service follows a three-tiered methodology for issuing winter products utilizing the Ready-Set-Go approach. This includes Outlooks, Watches, and Advisories and Warnings.

Outlook Phase (READY)

The Hazardous Weather Outlook is a text product that will contain information pertaining to potential winter storms that may occur in the later days of the forecast, typically for periods beyond 48 hours.

Watch Phase (SET)

A Winter Storm Watch is issued when the risk of hazardous winter weather has increased significantly, when there is a strong possibility that weather conditions will reach warning criteria, and typically falls in the 12 to 48 hour portion of the forecast. Winter storm watches are issued for snow, blowing snow, ice, sleet, and possible near-blizzard or blizzard conditions.

A Wind Chill Watch is issued when conditions are favorable for wind chill temperatures to meet or exceed local Wind Chill Warning criteria.

Warnings and Advisories (GO)

The following advisories and warnings are issued when an event is occurring, is imminent, or has a high probability of occurrence.  Warnings are issued for events that have a substantial impact and pose a significant threat to life and property.  Advisories are issued for less serious events that still pose a hazard or inconvenience, but typically do not pose an immediate threat of death or injury or significant property damage.

Blizzard Warning: Sustained wind or frequent gusts greater than or equal to 35 mph accompanied by falling and/or blowing snow, frequently reducing visibility to less than 1/4 mile for three hours or more.  Note, there is no snowfall amount criteria when issuing a blizzard warning.

Ice Storm Warning:  Significant, potentially life-threatening icing on the ground, trees, power lines, vehicles, streets, and sidewalks. Generally 1/4 inch or more of ice accumulations in 12 hours or less.

Winter Storm Warning: Issued for snow events of 6 inches or more in 12 hours, 8 inches or more of snow in 24 hours, sleet accumulations of 1/2 inch or more, near-blizzard conditions, or any combination of winter precipitation and wind which will produce life threatening conditions. Warnings may be issued for criteria lower than necessary if the combination of all weather phenomena has a high societal impact.

Wind Chill Warning: Wind chill values of minus 30 degrees F or colder.
 
Winter Weather Advisory: Typically issued for snowfall of 3 to 5 inches, for sleet accumulations of less than 1/2 inch, for freezing rain of freezing drizzle less than 1/4 inch, for areas of blowing snow reducing visibility, or any a combination of winter precipitation that will produce hazardous, but not necessarily life threatening conditions. Winter weather advisories may be issued for criteria lower than necessary if the event has a high societal impact, such as light snow affecting a morning or evening metro rush hour commute, or for an unusually early or late season event.

Wind Chill Advisory: Wind chill values of minus 20 to minus 29 degrees F.

Please note: Snowfall and windchill criteria may be different in nearby NWS offices.