Tuesday is the first day of spring. Rock Hill area weather won’t be spring-like

Even though Tuesday is the first day of spring, don’t expect warm weather to arrive quickly.
Even though Tuesday is the first day of spring, don’t expect warm weather to arrive quickly. tkimball@heraldonline.com

The transition from winter to spring will be marked by several days of chaotic weather in the Southeast, and the Rock Hill area will experience some of the rapid changes, meteorologists say.

An outbreak of severe weather, a potential midweek snowfall, and see-sawing temperatures are all part of the forecast this week.

Spring begins at 12:15 p.m. Tuesday, but as is often the case, winter will be a bit reluctant to loosen its grip.

Severe weather, a spring trademark in the Southeast, was forecast Monday over portions of Alabama, Tennessee and Georgia. The Storm Prediction Center in Norman, Okla., predicted “enhanced” risk of severe thunderstorms and tornadoes. That is the third-highest of five risk levels for severe weather.

The brunt of the severe weather has been forecast for south and west of Rock Hill, but National Weather Service meteorologist Harry Gerapetritis says forecasters will be watching developments closely for late Monday night and early Tuesday.

“The potential for any severe weather will increase after midnight south of the I-85 corridor,” Gerapetritis said.

The first batch of showers and storms is expected to move east of the Rock Hill area Tuesday morning. Then a second low pressure system is forecast to arrive late in the day and early Wednesday. This time, colder air will be in place, with precipitation falling as snow in the North Carolina mountains.

The National Weather Service said the atmosphere might be cold enough for precipitation to change to snow in the Piedmont for a time Wednesday morning, but that is most likely north of Charlotte.

Either way, Wednesday and Thursday are forecast to be cold days. Highs are only expected to reach the mid and upper 40s Wednesday and the mid 50s Thursday. Average highs at this time of year are in the mid 60s.

Milder weather is forecast for late in the week, with highs approaching 60 degrees Friday and climbing into the mid 60s Saturday and Sunday.

Steve Lyttle on Twitter: @slyttle