Wednesday Discussion : Heatwave Day 4… the Final Day

In what has become routine for the Hudson Valley, we’ve got a Heat Advisory in effect once again today.  Another scorcher already underway as we approach mid day.  Temperatures around 90° and heat index values near 100° are already being felt in the valley before lunch time.  Things only get more intense as we move through the afternoon.

Sunshine and blue skies with a SW flow will one more time, allow temperatures to skyrocket into the 90s.  The humid atmosphere resulting from dew point temperatures in the 70s, will drive real feel heat index values over 100° Wednesday afternoon.  As the Heat Advisory urges… be sure to take frequent breaks from direct sunlight, stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water, and check on elderly and at risk populations.  Just be sure to be aware of those around you, and lets look out for each other.  Thursday will see lots of clouds, and temperatures in the upper 70s to mid 80s, with widespread rain showers and thunderstorms.  So Wednesday is the final day of this heatwave… just hang in there folks.

Late Day T-Storm Concern

The National Weather Service SPC office has issued the following severe potential for today…

This guidance from the Storm Prediction Center (SPC) is rather ominous for later today and tonight.  It suggests a rather significant outbreak of strong to severe weather, especially for our viewers in NE Ulster, N Dutchess, Columbia and Greene counties.  We’ve reviewed the data as well, and we respect the SPC’s guidance, and suggest we all prepare for the potential of severe thunderstorms later today and tonight.  However, based on what we see, we don’t have quite the same level of concern.  Here is our StormPact image for today:

CONFIDENCE : AVERAGE … based on the consistency of the data at hand, with the timing of the T-storm threat being late in the day and this evening, as well as the volume of super cell T-Storm cells expected, our confidence is average

IMPACTS : LOW … the atmospheric conditions are favorable for the development of supercell T-Storms in the Hudson Valley, primarily after 4pm.  Multiple guidances show broken and disorganized lines of T-Storm activity, as opposed to a well organized squall line.  Because of the projected disorganized nature of the potential severe event, we don’t expect a large number of severe T-Storms.  **If Storms develop at a higher rate than projected in guidance, it would mean severe T-Storms over a larger area, and more of a ‘moderate impact’ for the HV.

OUTAGES : LOW … the latest guidance does not result in a large number of severe T-Storms in the region.  There will likely be a few, but based on the disorganized nature of the event, widespread outages are not likely.

TIMING : 4pm to midnight… with peak activity between 6pm and 10pm.

The most active futurecast radar definitely indicates a couple severe thunderstorms expected around the region, but it does not look nearly as impressive as some previous thunderstorm outbreaks from this spring.

Futurecast Radar : 2pm Wednesday – 12am Thursday

You can see a few pop up super cell T-Storms show up over the Hudson Valley around 4pm… but they do not appear particularly widespread or intense.  Those push out near dusk… as another broken line of showers and thunderstorms move in between 6pm and 10pm… possibly lingering through midnight.  After sunset around 8pm, when we lose the heating of the day… the storms will lose some of their energy, and should begin to gradually weaken.  With that said, there is definitely a likelihood of some strong to severe thunderstorms in a few locations late today and this evening.

Primary Threats:
– frequent lightning
– damaging wind gusts over 55mph
– Small hail

We’ll monitor this through the afternoon.  We’re seeing some indication that perhaps the guidance does not have a great handle on the situation… and could be underestimating the event.  That is why we always want to err on the side of caution, and move with the SPC.  Maybe we get lucky, and our assessment is correct.  But with severe weather, it’s best to be cautious.

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