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More Storms, Then the Heat Returns.

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Once again, the daytime heating has produced some widely scattered showers and storms this afternoon and as has been the case in recent days, their slow movement has also dropped some locally heavy rainfall.  Notice the totals for today, as of early this evening. 

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Now, notice the totals for the last 3 days.  Up to this point, there have been some winners and some losers in the rainfall category but at least we will keep a chance of showers/storms for several more days.  To illustrate how spotty the rainfall has been, the official total at the airport in Tulsa now stands at 24.21” for the year which is 6.51” below normal.

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The current pattern suggests these afternoon/evening showers and storms will fall apart leaving us mostly dry for the overnight hours except for a slight chance towards morning.  Then, as things heat back up Thursday afternoon, scattered showers/storms will reform throughout the day and then fall apart again early that night. 

But, after that the pattern aloft is more supportive of a more widespread area of showers/storms coming our way for the morning hours of Friday and perhaps again for the morning hours of Saturday.  This is due to a somewhat stronger NW flow pattern aloft which is expected to generated a more organized area of showers/storms over the High Plains during the late afternoon hours which would then move our direction reaching us by early morning.  This is not a guarantee that we will all receive some decent rainfall, but as you can see on our forecast page it certainly is supportive of better chances of rain.  Also, notice the 5 day QPF map which suggests a good soaking is certainly possible.  As always, keep in mind that this is an areal average and some locations could receive twice that amount while nearby locations receive very little if any at all.

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Something to keep in mind as well is that some of those showers/storms could be marginally severe with localized damaging winds the primary threat.  This pattern may produce another chance of early morning showers/storms for Sunday but that activity will most likely be further north into KS the way things are looking now.  That will then be followed by ridging aloft becoming more dominant over the state once again which will result in little or no mention of rain going into next week.  That will also lead to temperatures heating back up although the impact of the rain footprint will be a factor in how quickly and how much.  Right now, it appears that triple digits are unlikely until perhaps the end of this forecast cycle but the combination of heat and humidity will certainly push those heat index values well into triple digit territory.

By the way, here are the numbers for today for the max/min temperatures, courtesy of the OK Mesonet.  We have managed to avoid any triple digits across the state again today.  We have also had very little wind to provide much of a cooling breeze and light winds are expected again Thursday.  This lack of dispersion due to the light winds has also resulted in an Ozone Alert being issued for Thursday.

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By the way, the more organized morning showers/storms early Friday together with lingering cloud cover should provide more in the way of relief from the heat.  After reaching the low-mid 90s again Thursday afternoon, we will struggle to reach 90 on Friday followed by low 90s on Saturday before the heat starts building again going into next week.

The 8-14 day outlook certainly supports a return to above normal temperatures and below normal rainfall chances over that time span.

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So, stay tuned and check back for updates.

Dick Faurot

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