Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Hot, Isolated Storms for the 4th

By Jay Grymes & Steve Caparotta

It was back into the mid 90°s once again for many WAFB neighborhoods on Tuesday afternoon.  For Baton Rouge’s Metro Airport, that makes 10 of the past 11 days with highs of 95° or above -- maybe not a record, but it’s still tough to handle.  And for many neighborhoods, the run of heat has been accompanied by a substantial dry spell ... more and more folks are turning on the sprinklers!
Some neighborhoods got a decent rain on Tuesday afternoon, but in general, there was less coverage and most of the t-storms that did develop were not as intense as some seen on Monday.  Our thinking for Wednesday -- Independence Day -- is to plan essentially for a repeat of today, with spotty to isolated afternoon showers, including a couple of rumbles of thunder for a few neighborhoods.  But as was true for Tuesday, limited coverage of rains on Wednesday means only a few get a cooling, needed shower.  And most of us will see a return of mid 90°s for Wednesday afternoon, with peak Heat Index values up around 105°, reaching the “Dangerous” category for prolonged exposure!

Whatever rains do develop on Wednesday should be well out of the way by the evening’s fireworks festivities.  Temps in the 8-9PM window will still be in the 80°s just about everywhere, so be prepared for a warm evening.
Yesterday we mentioned that the upper-level ridge that has been largely responsible for the recent heat wave was expected to weaken and shift a bit to the west in the coming days, and it still looks like that will be the case.  By Thursday, we should see a slight uptick in rain chances that will persist into the weekend, with even better rain chances by Sunday.  By the weekend, our daily weather should be something a little bit more like “normal” for July: highs in the low 90°s with 30% to 40% rain chances each day.  Even then, however, we’re keeping the early morning minimums in the mid 70°s, slightly above July long-term norms.
Nothing significant to discuss in the tropics.
Here’s hoping that you get to enjoy a little Independence Day rest and relaxation, even if it’s going to be another sweltering day!

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