Thursday, May 21, 2015

A Little Less Rain on Friday

By Jay Grymes & Steve Caparotta

May 21st WAFB First Alert Quickcast:

- sct’d rains return for Friday, a little quieter on Saturday
- back to scattered showers & storms for Sunday & Memorial Day

A cool front continues to slide southward across the Bayou State this afternoon.  Low-level Gulf moisture, moderately cool air aloft and the approaching cool front are all working together to fire afternoon showers and t-storms.  The first Severe T-Storm Warning of the afternoon was posted just after 2:00pm for Amite and Pike counties -- since then there have been a couple of additional Warnings up near the LA/MS state line and a Flash Flood Warning for parts of Livingston Parish in the mid afternoon. 

To these warnings you can add-in a few strong storms across the WAFB viewing area through the afternoon that produced brief downpours, frequent lightning and probably some pockets of small hail.  Scattered rains are likely to continue into the late afternoon before slowly waning into the evening hours.

We will keep isolated rains in the overnight forecast, trailing off to mainly coastal activity by the early morning.  Scattered showers and storms are expected to return for Friday afternoon.

The cool front mentioned above will ease its way into the coastal waters overnight, then start a slow drift back to the north on Friday.  That set-up should allow for slightly lower dew points (less humid air) to settle over the region tonight, with Friday morning temperatures slipping into the mid to upper 60°s for folks along and north of the I-10/12 corridor.  But with the front slowly retreating northward - - a warm front - - tomorrow and into Saturday, the lower humidity will be short-lived.  Expect a morning start in the upper 60°s for Saturday’s sunrise, then it’s back to morning lows at 70° or more for Sunday and Monday as the Gulf air returns.

We still expect Saturday to be the “driest” of the next four days, with Saturday afternoon rain chances running around 20% to 30%.  As we head into Sunday and Monday, increased instability will mean better rain chances, especially for the afternoons.  Saturday’s lower rain chances also suggest that it will have the warmest afternoon readings over the coming days.  After many communities top out in the low to mid 80°s for Friday, we’re calling for upper 80°s for most WAFB neighborhoods for Saturday.  Plan for mid 80°s on Sunday and Memorial Day (Monday) as we dodge scattered afternoon rains on Sunday and scattered-to-likely rains on Monday.

We’re sticking with scattered to numerous showers and storms for the better part of next week too, with morning lows in the low 70°s for the Capital City and afternoon highs in the mid 80°s through mid-week.  We could see a modest drop in rain chances for the second half of the coming work week, and that will likely be accompanied by a return to upper 80°s for afternoon highs.

Bottom line: it’s about as close to a summer-like pattern that we can be for May.  We recommend that you keep the umbrella within reach for most of the next seven days.

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