Title pic
 
The Aaron’s 499 race weekend draws thousands of race fans from across the country to Talladega Superspeedway each spring. In addition to fans gathering for 3 days of racing, tens of thousands of people will be camping trackside, enjoying several days of race festivities. With a large number of people, many from other parts of the country, gathering in the local area, it is essential to refresh everyone on weather safety and the potential hazards that central Alabama weather can pose.

May is part of Spring Severe Weather Season in Alabama. This potentially means dangerous weather could affect the Talladega area during the May 3-5, 2013 weekend. Remain weather aware throughout the weekend, whether you are attending race festivities during the day or camping out near the track. Below are potential weather hazards that could affect race weekend. Review these weather safety tips so you are prepared before severe weather occurs!
 
Lightning occurs in EVERY thunderstorm and should to be taken seriously. One lightning related death occurred in Alabama last year. Lightning travels much faster than the sound of thunder. If thunder is heard or lightning is observed, immediately move to a protected structure or inside your non-convertible vehicle. Plan ahead so you are not entering or leaving the speedway during periods of lightning. If caught outside during a thunderstorm, do not take shelter under trees, in exposed areas around the track, concession stands and tents, and avoid metal objects such as fences and antennas. Remember, lightning can strike far away from the rain area of a thunderstorm.

Take Severe Thunderstorm Warnings seriously
. Severe thunderstorms can produce damaging winds and large hail. If a Severe Thunderstorm Warning is issued for the Superspeedway, weather conditions could deteriorate quickly. Hail at least the size of quarters or winds of 58 miles per hour or greater are possible. Take action immediately to protect yourself and those around you. Take shelter in a hardened building or other structure with four enclosed walls
. When thunder roars, go indoors!
Lightning
 
Hail Picture Hail is a dangerous product of thunderstorms and can cause significant damage and bodily harm. Though the hail pictured here is only around the size of a quarter, 2 inch hail has already been recorded this spring in Central Alabama. Large hailstones can break tree limbs or windshields, and leave bruises on your body.

Picture courtesy of Billy Green, Tuscaloosa County EMA.
 
Strong Winds can knock down tree limbs and blow around loose objects, such as tents, trash cans, and chairs. If thunderstorms are expected, secure loose objects in your area and be prepared to seek shelter immediately. NOAA Logo
 
Here are some resources to keep up on the weather at Talladega Super Speedway during race weekend:
7-Day Forecast for Talladega Hazardous Weather Outlook Graphicasts with the latest weather info
 

NOAA Weather Radio

Bring your NOAA Weather Radio with you to the track. You can program it to the Mt. Cheaha transmitter, which is 162.475 mHz or SAME code 001121 (Talladega County).  For more info on weather radios and codes, click here.

 

Climatology

The following tables show the average high and low temperatures and the record high and low temperatures, as well as the number of times it has rained, for May 3rd-5th at Talladega from 1950 through 2012:

 
May 3th
Average High Average Low Record High Record Low Days with Rain
79 53 91 in 1990 35 in 1971 26
May 4th
Average High Average Low Record High Record Low Days with Rain
79 51 90 in 1955 32 in 1971 18
May 5th
Average High Average Low Record High Record Low Days with Rain
79 51 92 in 1959 33 in 1973
11
 

Spring Race Weather History

This is a chart of the high and low temperature with rainfall for each of the past spring races at Talladega:

Season Date Max Min Rain   Season Date Max Min Rain
1970 12-Apr 67 52 0.42   1992 3-May 84 55 0.00
1971 16-May 70 49 0.00   1993 2-May 74 58 0.00
1972 7-May 78 55 0.02   1994 1-May 81 64 0.00
1973 6-May 74 40 0.00   1995 30-Apr 82 41 0.00
1974 5-May 80 59 0.24   1996 28-Apr 77 45 0.00
1975 4-May 81 52 0.00   1997 10-May 76 46 0.00
1976 2-May 71 49 0.00   1998 26-Apr 75 42 0.00
1977 1-May 84 58 0.00   1999 25-Apr M M 0.00
1978 14-May 75 52 0.00   2000 16-Apr 70
44
0.00
1979 6-May 84 52 0.00   2001 22-Apr 80 50 0.00
1980 4-May 80 55 0.00   2002 21-Apr 88 58 0.00
1981 3-May M  49 0.00   2003 6-Apr 77 50 0.00
1982 2-May 82 53 0.00   2004 25-Apr 85 55 0.00
1983 1-May 84 44 0.00   2005 1-May 66 43 0.22
1984 6-May 88 71 0.00   2006 1-May 66 50 0.10
1985 5-May 82 50 0.00   2007 29-Apr 80 44 0.00
1986 4-May 85 36 0.00   2008 27-Apr 82 63 1.57
1987 3-May 78 60 0.63   2009 26-Apr 85 51 0.00
1988 1-May 77 37 0.00   2010 25-Apr 73 60 0.78
1989 7-May 71 40 0.00   2011 17-Apr 65 39 0.00
1990 6-May 69 46 0.00   2012 6-May 80 60 0.04
1991 6-May 71 60 T            
M = Missing Data     T=Trace
 
Pic of Talladega track 
 

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