Growing concerns that we may be dealing with a high wind event evolving during the overnight hours on Thursday into the day on Friday. All thanks to a rapidly developing storm system from the Central Plains that will be driving a cold front through the Eastern Half of the nation. Not to mention the very warm temperatures that will be following the upcoming event as well.
The main driver for the strong winds we are expecting is the enhancement of the nocturnal low level Jetstream which sits about 5000 feet above the surface. While this area of low pressure continues to strengthen as it crosses into the Great Lakes, the gradient between this area of low pressure and a strong high pressure system off the East Coast will really start enhancing those winds. Forecast models have been quite bold with 70-80kts (80-90 mph) low level jet at 5000 feet which is very strong. Now keep in mind, those winds are pretty high off the ground and unlikely we will see those reaching the surface. With the aid of falling precipitation, we will see some of those stronger winds above he surface to mix down.
With the strong wind energy with that low level jet, no surprise we can see wind gusts 40-55 mph at the surface during the nighttime hours as the cold front edges closer. Winds of this speed can knock down some tree limbs and cause some sporadic power outages at times. Gusty winds will continue throughout the day on Friday even behind the front.