Heat Index Increasing

Thursday, June 2nd 2011, 5:19 am
By: News On 6

Expect another warm and humid afternoon with highs in the lower to mid 90s.  The heat index will also be increasing today and through the weekend.

We're moving into an extended stretch of unseasonably warm temperatures that may result in heat headlines across the region.  Record highs will be possible today and tomorrow in some locations with temperature heat index values approaching the 100 to 104 range Friday and Saturday.   It doesn't appear we will reach the exact criteria for an issuance of a heat advisory, but you should remain diligent of the fact that heat sickness can occur quickly in this environment.  We've gone from a mild spring temperature regime to a late June and early July regime in a matter of days.  We usually have a chance to "ramp up" with our heat and humidity which allow us to become acclimated over a few weeks.  But the rapid increase of temperature due to a mid level ridge developing over the southern plains will be increasing the heat quickly.  Our neighbors in southwestern OK have already had many days in the 90s and some triple digit readings, but this is due to the presence of dry air and the negative feedback of the lack of evapotranspiration.  In other words, the drought has contributed to the exceptionally hot readings this year across the southwestern OK vicinity.

 Our mid level ridge will continue to be the dominate feature for the next few days effectively keeping any significant system away from the state.  There will be a weakness in the ridge this weekend and our much advertised easterly wave will slide "under the belly" and provide some lift in the atmosphere needed for isolated storms.  The coverage and also the chance will be low, but not zero.  I'll keep the 20% pop from Sunday into Tuesday.  This morning's data is not quite as bullish on this possibility, but I see no real reason to change the trend of the forecast at this point.

 The normal climate pattern for early to mid June usually results in an episode of  "northwest flow" which brings storm systems into the state from the northwest.  This is a prevalent feature and is expected to develop, but this has not been a normal year, and I'll continue to study the ensembles for hints in the pattern. The GFS operational indicates the week of June12th through the 14th may offer some NW flow action, but the ensembles suggest otherwise. 

 The Atlantic Hurricane season is officially underway as of yesterday.  I'll include a link to the National Hurricane Center in the post this morning.  If you have some time to kill, explore this site.  I think you'll find many items of interest.