It has been one hot week this past week, from the Northern Plains to the Northeast coast , with temperatures getting into the 90s and 100s and feeling that hot and even hotter when you factored in the dew points in the 60s and 70s (ugh!). But there has been some changes going on in the weather world recently and your wishes for cool relief are being answered, but unfortunately, that comes with a price.
Heavy rains and gusty winds blew through the Motor City late last night. That was after a very steamy day where temps hit a high of 95°, (a good 11° warmer than normal) and dew points were in the low 70s. In the end, the heat index values topped out in the low 100s in the afternoon hours.
In Chicago last night, there was Pearl Jam concert at Wrigley Field and it had to be delayed by over 2 hours when thunder and lightning from approaching storms, caused the band and the fans to clear the field. It was also a balmy one in the Windy City, with a daytime high of 96° (the normal high is 84° for this time of year) and dew points were in the low 70s, which made the heat index get into the low 100s. Storms blew through a few hours before midnight, dropping heavy rains and producing gusty winds.
The high heat tied or broke records in the northeast on Friday. The “R” next to the numbers indicates where new records were set. At times, it was so hot and humid, that the heat index values were into the hundreds in NYC before the noon time hour!
The jet stream is starting to dip down towards the Ohio River Valley and into the Northeast. It is pushing along a storm system where it’s cold front is carving up this moist and hot air, producing showers and strong storms. Behind the front, the temps and the dew points are dropping! In the past 24 hours from this afternoon to Friday afternoon, the dew points have dropped the most in the upper peninsula of Michigan, it actually feels like a Spring-like day near Marquette, MI.
The temperatures have dropped even more so than the dew points! It is a huge difference today out there in places like Green Bay and Syracuse where temps have dropped around 25°. Wow, time to open up those windows and turn off the A/C!
As this hot and humid air mass is replaced by a cooler and drier one, the two air masses clash along the cold front and you get strong to severe thunderstorms forming. These storms have already started moving through portions of Indiana, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and New York earlier this afternoon. Several of the big cities along the I-95 corridor, from Washington DC, to NYC, to Boston and Portland will see these storms before the day is done. Primarily, people have to be worried about strong, straight line winds which could bring down trees and power lines, as well as heavy rains and small hail. The chance for tornadoes is next to none, but can’t rule out the chance for a supercell thunderstorm starting to rotate.
There are numerous counties placed into a Severe Thunderstorm Watch area, including cities such as Cincinnati, Washington DC, Poughkeepsie, Boston and Portland. As of 3 ET, NYC, Philadelphia and Trenton are not in the watch box, but they will likely be placed into that watch risk zone as well at some point before the afternoon is done.
Once the storms come and go, we’ll be seeing temps trending closer to normal levels, if not a little bit above. The air is looking to be much drier, compared to the past few days, and with a northwesterly breeze, it will feel very enjoyable. That can be especially true towards the interior sectors of the Northeast.
Enjoy the rest of your weekend!
WeatherNation Meteorologist Addison Green