Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Hottest Days of the Summer Ahead?

By Jay Grymes & Steve Caparotta

WAFB First Alert Quickcast:

- heat-&-humidity remain the key weather story of the week
- a little uptick in activity in the tropics

As we’ve discussed yesterday, the week is shaping to likely be the ‘hottest’ week of the summer so far … and why not? August 19th holds the record for the hottest day on the books for Baton Rouge, hitting a sweltering 110° in on August 19, 1909 ... with the following day reaching 108°, the second hottest day ever for the Red Stick!

So there is some good news: these two 1909 records are safe! We’ll only reach the mid to upper 90°s over the next several days, but with the Gulf humidity it will feel like afternoons above 100°.

The upper-level ridge that we’ve been discussing is still the major player for our upcoming heat, although a “crack in the ridge lid” this afternoon did allow for more thundershowers over south Louisiana than we expected. In fact, heavy rains over southwestern Louisiana today prompted a Flash Flood Warning for the Lake Charles area. But all that weather settles down through the evening and we can expect fair to partly-cloudy skies overnight and into Wednesday morning.

It’s not just the heat; the “muggies” stay with us. Morning minimums on Wednesday will be in the mid to upper 70°s for much of the WAFB viewing area. For the afternoon, a handful of neighborhoods get a shower or storm, but the vast majority stay dry ... and highs will reach the mid 90°s.

The ridge stays in play into the weekend, inhibiting vertical cloud development and the onset of afternoon showers. At the same time, low-level Gulf humidity hangs tough, making for sticky mornings and oppressively hot afternoons right into next week. We’ve got rain chances at 20% for Thursday, and spotty at best for Friday and Saturday. Meanwhile highs each of those three days will be in the mid to upper 90°s for most WAFB communities.

Set rain chances at 20% for Sunday, then ease them to 30% for Monday and 40% for Tuesday as the ridge weakens.

In the tropics, the National Hurricane Center is watching two tropical waves with interest. The westernmost of the two waves is roughly 700+ miles east of the Lesser Antilles and has been labeled “Invest 96L”. The NHC is giving 96L a 30% chance for development (becoming a tropical depression or stronger) over the next 2 days and a 40% chance over the next 5 days. The second wave has not been labeled as yet, but the NHC posts it with a 20% chance of development over the next 5 days.

Very preliminary model projections call for 96L to move into the eastern Caribbean over the next 2 to 3 days with slow strengthening. It is still far too soon to become concerned about 96L, or any Atlantic waves at this point, but do remember: we are entering the ‘heart’ of hurricane season. Historically, roughly 65% of Louisiana’s tropical landfalls have occurred over the upcoming 6-week period … GetaGamePlan.org!

No comments:

Post a Comment