Monday, July 21, 2014

WAFB First Alert QuickCast:
- mainly dry for Tuesday
- better rain chances for Wednesday & Thursday
- watching T.D. #2 in the tropical Atlantic

The weekend didn’t turn out quite as wet as we expected, but it was far from a ‘pretty’ Saturday and Sunday either. However, for most WAFB neighborhoods, we had a little opportunity for Friday’s big rains to run-off and sink-in.

The good news is that today was -- and tomorrow should be --mainly-dry days around the viewing area. Note that we said “mainly-dry,” which means we can’t rule out a shower or two, especially during the mid to late afternoons. One thing seems certain: the lawns and the mosquitoes are happy. (If you get a few minutes,“walk your yard” and dump any unintended containers holding water. This can be a great lesson for the kids too.)

But with less cloud cover and reduced rain chances comes a return of full-bore summer heat. After a morning start in the low 70°s for Tuesday, most WAFB neighborhoods will see highs in the low 90°s -- in fact, we won’t be surprise to see a couple of communities hit the mid 90°s. And as you know, with our Gulf air in place, that translates into Heat Index readings (‘feels like’ temperatures) that will peak around 100°or so. And remember, the Heat Index applies to the shade -- in direct sunshine, the Heat Index can go up another 10° to 15° under the right conditions. (So please be careful in the heat.)

An upper-level ridge to our west will help maintain a northwesterly flow at the upper levels and keep a bit of a lid on the atmosphere through Tuesday -- hence, our forecast for “mainly dry.” However, as we head into Wednesday, the guidance is hinting at a weak mid-level low moving into the central Gulf Coast region from the east. That low will provide enough lift to generate afternoon rains for Wednesday and Thursday before exiting the area. At this time, we’ll go with scattered showers and t-storms -- mostly the afternoon variety -- for both days. For Friday and the weekend, it looks like it might be a little drier, with rain chances currently posted at 20% to 30% for the three days.

And in the tropics? The National Hurricane Center (NHC) is has upgraded ‘Invest 92L’ in the central tropical Atlantic to Tropical Depression #2. The current official forecast keeps T.D. #2 on a west-to-WNW track over the coming days without further intensification. And more importantly, the NHC has T.D. #2 fizzling out near the Lesser Antilles on Thursday, ripped apart by strong wind shear centered over the Caribbean. The bottom line: T.D. #2 does not appear to be a threat for the Gulf.


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