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Heat Warning Extended Into Thursday, Relief Arrives Later Friday.

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Pretty miserable outside today as you can see by those maximum heat index values which in some cases exceeded 110.  To put things into perspective, those numbers are still below the record temperature for this date which was 115 set back in 1936; and of course they did not have air conditioning back then. 

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Anyway, the good folks at the NWS office went with an excessive heat warning for many locations which will be extended into the Thursday afternoon time frame as tomorrow will certainly not be any cooler.  After starting off in the upper 70s to near 80, our daytime highs will be near 100 for many locations but with dew point temperatures holding well in the 70s, the heat index will once again be near 110. 

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Here are the actual max/min air temperatures recorded around the state, courtesy of the OK Mesonet.  Notice a few locations actually did make it to 100 and many more are expected to do so on Thursday.  In fact, Thursday still looks to be the hottest day of this forecast cycle and quite likely the hottest day for quite some time as a pattern change will be taking place later on Friday due to a seasonally strong cool front that still is on tap to arrive later in the day.

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However, before that system gets here, look for Friday to also be hot and humid with temperatures starting off near 80 and reaching well into the 90s along with a light southerly wind.  However, an increase in cloud cover should keep temperatures somewhat in check and a better chance of showers/storms with the actual boundary as it moves through late in the day and that night will also bring some relief. 

Speaking of relief, as you can see on our forecast page, daytime highs are expected to only be in the 80s for the weekend into early next week and overnight lows should also be dropping into the 60s.  NE winds behind the cool front will bring in the cooler air, but the actual frontal boundary looks to stall out near the Red River Valley and hang around down there going into next week.  That will keep us with the cooler air but will also be close enough for lots of lingering cloud cover along with at least a chance for some lingering showers or storms going into early next week.

Speaking of rainfall, Friday night through the Sunday time frame looks to have the best chance of showers/storms and some may be locally quite heavy.  Although this is not a dynamic severe weather situation, there will be the possibility of some damaging downburst winds.  Also, there is the potential for a good soaking rain as you can see on the 7 day QPF which has come in with a somewhat wetter signal.

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Beyond that, the 8-14 day outlook continues to keep the extreme heat at bay with temperatures trending closer to normal after the relatively mild start for the first part of the week.  That also suggests that after the Thu/Fri time frame, we should not be facing any more triple digits with either temperature or heat index values through that time frame. 

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By the way, the normal diurnal temperature range at this time of year is 94/72 for the max/min.

So, stay tuned and check back for updates.

Dick Faurot

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