An incredibly balmy holiday season is showing no signs of letting up until the calendar turns.

The potential for record high temperatures will continue, along with some chances for thunderstorms. High temperatures are forecast to continue in the low 70s through New Year’s Day, when another storm system will finally break the unseasonal weather.

While the National Weather Service is keeping an eye on a slight chance of severe weather across the Mid-South today, some forecasts are suggesting Saturday’s storm system could be a larger threat.

“Guidance continues to struggle with placement and intensity of the surface low associated with this threat,” the NWS Memphis Forecast Office said on Tuesday. “It seems that all the ingredients for severe weather will be in the region, and the Storm Prediction Center maintains a risk area over the Mid-South on Saturday.”

Much cooler temperatures will move in behind the system, with a high in the low 40s on Sunday.

“We still maintain the chance for some winter precip on the back end of this system,” the weather service said. “It is too far out to put any details about that into the forecast. Only one model puts out any real appreciable winter precip, but it’s enough that we cannot ignore.”

Today’s severe risk is a 2 out of 5, or “slight,” on the NWS scale. The primary threats are damaging wind and local flooding, with secondary threats of tornadoes and hail. Areas generally south of I-40 are in the “slight” risk zone, with timing of midday into early evening.

Numerous high temperature records have fallen since Christmas Day. Memphis set a new record of 77 on December 25, breaking the old record of 76 set in 1889. Jackson, Tenn., hit 75, breaking the old record of 71 set in 1982.

Staff Writer

Jebb Johnston is a 1991 Alcorn Central High School graduate and a 1995 Ole Miss journalism graduate. His primary beats are city and county government.

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