Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Summertime Heat Accompanies Thunderstorm Chances


Good afternoon, the heat will really be making a return to southern Kentucky this week in addition to multiple chances for showers and thunderstorms. Currently, temperatures are in the upper 80s with dew points in the upper 60s. This has made for a pretty hot and humid afternoon under partly cloudy skies. In the upper levels of the atmosphere, we are currently in a northwest flow pattern meaning multiple disturbances will dive through the state this week.

Currently, a vorticity maximum is moving east across the Ohio Valley and helping to provide uplift for storm development. Storms have fired along a weak cold front draped across southeast Missouri and southern Illinois this afternoon. We will certainly have to keep an eye on these storms as they move east and congeal into a linear structure. Even though these storms will not have much wind shear to work with, plentiful instability and high lapse rates will aid in storm development. This means we could see a few severe storms later this afternoon into tonight with the main threats being damaging winds and large hail in addition to heavy rain and lightning. The SPC has placed areas just to the west of us in a slight (think enhanced) risk for severe storms today.
Day 1 Convective Outlook (Courtesy: SPC)

After this main line of storms, additional showers and thunderstorms will persist overnight. Most places in southern Kentucky will see around a half inch of rainfall overnight with locally heavier amounts possible in thunderstorms.

Looking ahead into Wednesday, the heat will really begin to build. A strong ridge to our south will push north into the area allowing temperatures to climb into the 90s. Winds out of the southwest will continue pushing in moisture from the Gulf of Mexico keeping the weather very uncomfortable. In addition, another upper level disturbance will dive in from the northwest tomorrow warranting another chance for scattered thunderstorms. With the instability once again in place for storms to work with, the SPC has placed Warren County in a day 2 slight risk for severe thunderstorms. This means that anywhere within 25 miles of a location has a 15% chance of seeing severe weather.
Day 2 Convective Outlook (Courtesy: SPC)

Damaging winds and large hail look to be the main threats although an isolated tornado cannot be ruled out due to slightly better wind shear. Showers and thunderstorms should begin to dissipate overnight.

On Thursday, that ridge will really begin to build in the southeast U.S. and our temperatures will make a run into the lower to middle 90s. Those temperatures combined with dew points in the lower 70s mean that we could see heat index values over 100 degrees on Thursday afternoon. Remember that if you have to be outside, it is important to take plenty of breaks and stay hydrated.

Outside of some very warm temperatures we will see partly cloudy skies on Thursday. A few pop-up thunderstorms are possible with daytime heating but not everyone will see rain. We will remain rain-free on Thursday night with temperatures dropping into the middle 70s.


This Afternoon: High - 89 Low - 71 Winds - SW at 5-10 mph.
Precipitation: 60% chance of thunderstorms this evening and tonight. A few of these storms could be severe.
Skies: Partly to Mostly Cloudy

Wednesday: High - 93 Low - 72 Winds - SW at 5-10 mph becoming calm overnight.
Precipitation: Scattered showers and thunderstorms. A few thunderstorms could be severe.
Skies: Mostly Cloudy

Thursday: High - 94 Low - 72 Winds - SW at 5-10 mph.
Precipitation: Isolated PM Thunderstorms.
Skies: Partly Cloudy

Forecaster: Zack Leasor

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