DEQ has issued the first “Ozone Action Day” for the year, with Wednesday afternoon ozone levels around the Baton Rouge metro area potentially becoming problematic (“unhealthy”) for sensitive individuals: mainly the very young, the elderly, and those already afflicted with respiratory problems. If you or a family member or friend fall within one of these categories, we encourage sufferers to limit their time spent outdoors, especially during the middle and late afternoon on Wednesday.
Yesterday we noted a broad mid-level storm system over west Texas and suggested that it would track southeast and miss the Bayou State. Today, that system did two unexpected things: it grew in size and took a little turn onto a more easterly path. Although the system remains relatively weak today, it does look like it will get close enough to the WAFB viewing area over the course of the next 24 hours or so to sling a few showers our way.
We’ve already seen some showers in western Louisiana this afternoon, and we think that the outer reaches of the complex could deliver a light shower or two to the WAFB region this evening and overnight.
Since we still believe the system’s main energy will move out to the Gulf rather than pass over Louisiana, we don’t anticipate this to be much of a rainmaker. But the system’s circulation, boosted by Wednesday’s daytime heating and moisture off the Gulf, may be just enough to fuel a few mid-afternoon showers in the area. We’re going with a 20% to possibly a 30% rain chance for Wednesday.
|Titan9 PrecisionCast projection for 4 p.m. Wednesday showing isolated showers and t-storms around the area.|
But as the system moves over the Gulf and out of the picture, mid/upper-level ridging will take charge of the central Gulf Coast’s weather through the remainder of the work week and right through the weekend. Given that set-up, we expect a mainly-dry and very warm run of days from Thursday through the weekend and into next week. At the same time, we say goodbye to the relatively “dry” air (dewpoints in 50°s and 60°s) that we’ve enjoyed over the last few days -- we’ll start to feel rising humidity levels on Wednesday with a slow-but-steady increase in low-level moisture right into the weekend.
Highs return to the upper 80°s for Thursday through Sunday, with some locations possibly reaching the 90°s. Add in the rising humidity, and we’ll get a taste of summer-like heat by the weekend, if not before!