Severe Storms, Record Heat – Louisiana Could See Both Today
Louisiana residents weary of record heat and humidity could catch a small break from the current heatwave today. However, that break in the higher than average temperatures could come at a cost. The Storm Prediction Center is suggesting that much of the state could be in line for strong to severe thunderstorms later this afternoon.
Yesterday afternoon in and around the Lafayette area there were a few showers and thunderstorms that literally "popped up" in the atmosphere because the combination of heat and humidity was just too much. Nature always seeks a balance and I guess those short-lived torrential downpours that some of us found ourselves under were the corrections that Mother Nature needed.
A similar scenario is likely to unfold again this afternoon but it does appear as if the number of showers and storms as well as their ariel coverage will be larger than yesterday. The Storm Prediction Center outlook suggests that all but the extreme southeastern and extreme northwestern corners of the state will be under at least a "marginal risk" for severe storms this afternoon.
Meteorologist Bradley Benoit of KATC Television suggested in a blog post on the TV station website that despite the threat of strong storms today, most of us in south Louisiana will miss the showers. Here's what the GRAF Weather Model is suggesting. Evidentally we can expect for the late afternoon and early evening hours.
Benoit's forecast for the afternoon suggests a 40% threat of showers but temperatures will still have plenty of time to reach into the middle 90s before any cooling drops of rain can make a difference. The National Weather Service Forecast Office in Lake Charles in their overnight forecast had put the probability of precipitation at 60%, suggesting the most likely time for the rain to fall would be between 5 pm and 6 pm.
The forecast for the Juneteenth Holiday Weekend doesn't provide much relief from the heat nor does it offer a better chance of showers. Just to clarify, there will be at least a slight risk of rain each day through the weekend but the rain threat will come in the form of the afternoon and early evening showers or storms.
As far as a real break in the heatwave goes, don't expect that to happen anytime soon. As of now, forecast models have the afternoon high temperatures forecast for south Louisiana to reach into the upper 90s from Saturday through at least next weekend and perhaps beyond.
It probably would be a good time to clean your air conditioner's filter and make sure you've got your unit ready to keep your family cool. Oh, by the way, summer won't officially begin until Tuesday. I guess Mother Nature is just being a danged overachiever.
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