Hot and humid conditions and thunderstorm chances have been the norm as of late. Now the tropics are beginning to heat up, too, with two active tropical storms in the Atlantic. Here’s what to expect for the next seven days.
We’ve changed up the format of the weather section slightly. We’ve drafted Weather Dan to write an outlook for the upcoming week. His updates will run once a week in time for the weekend, rather than more frequently. As always, Dan can answer your pressing weather questions either in the comments here or on Twitter.
We’re now over two-thirds done with meteorological summer, as we bid goodbye to July we’re greeted with the latest monthly temperature for Richmond from the National Weather Service office in Wakefield. Based on temperature data from 1980 to 2010, the average temperature over the entire month of July is 79.2 degrees. July 2012 had an average temperature of 82.7, which ranks second in the record books dating back to 1887. July 2012′s 20 days in the 90s falls just short of the record of 23, but marks the third straight July with 20-plus 90-degree days. There’s only been one other stretch of three years with 20 or more 90-plus days.
Tropical Storm Ernesto has matured over the last couple days as it has begun its trek into the Caribbean Sea. . While it’s chance to make landfall are about the same as me winning gold in London, there’s still a risk for some impacts on the western part of the state if the storm makes a turn to the north at some point. The biggest threat from Ernesto at the moment is the western Caribbean, especially Jamaica and the Yucatan Peninsula, where the storm is forecast to slow down and intensify over the weekend. Once it moves into the Gulf of Mexico, another landfall is expected on the western coast, either in Mexico, Texas, or possibly Louisiana.
Tropical Depression Six also developed Friday evening near the African coast, and has been upgraded to Tropical Storm Florence this morning. The National Hurricane Center doesn’t have a lot of confidence in this system’s development. There are some hints that it may either fall apart or curve out to sea, but it’s too soon to say. If it does hold together as it gets closer to the Windward Islands, it may be a system of concern for the East Coast by next weekend.
In Virginia, the week upcoming is looking like a typical August week. While we are some temperature relief beginning Monday, we’re going to pay our dues to get there. If you’re headed out to the Carytown Watermelon Festival, or have any other outdoor plans, plan for another hot weekend.
Despite the temperature relief coming next week, dewpoints will remain high. It doesn’t really matter what the relative humidity is, when dewpoints are above 65, it’s going to feel humid.
Highs will remain in the low and mid 90s over the weekend. Pop-up storms are possible again Saturday, while a more organized threat may develop later Sunday and into Monday as a disturbance slides from the Plains into the northeast and New England. While most of the thunderstorm threat will be to our north, the risk for organized thunderstorms exists.
Beyond Monday, conditions become more tranquil. Highs will still hang out near 90 through most of the week, with lows in the mid 70s and a general thunderstorm risk through the end of the week.
While neither Ernesto nor Six are of direct concern to Virginia at the moment, but I’ll provide updates if the situation changes. Enjoy the hot weather this weekend!