Another Heat Wave

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After Wednesday’s 91 and yesterday’s 94, today’s predicted 96 degrees will make it Boston’s second heat wave of the year. It should be official at 11 am when the temperature strikes 90 or 91 and it will certainly turn into at least a 5-day heat wave with the projected 95 tomorrow and the 93 on Sunday. Monday’s max may be impacted by a potential earlier arrival of showers and boomers. Consequently, I will stay steady with yesterday’s thinking and ratchet back the high for that day to a bit below 90 degrees. The temperatures have at least a 50/50 shot of reaching 90 next Tuesday and Wednesday as well. If all 3 of these days bust 90, then it will be an 8-day heat wave which is rare. Boston’s longest heat wave of 9 days lasted from July 3-11 in 1912. The next 3 on the list are all 8 days long. August 11-18, 2002 was the most recent followed by July 19-26, 1994 then August 10-17, 1944. August 1988 was also brutal with a 4-day heat wave from the 3rd through the 6th followed by a 7-day heat wave on the 9th through the 15th.  It was the hottest August in 118 years featuring 11 days over 90 degrees bringing the 1988 total to 25 days which is double the average number.  More recently, July 2011 was the 2nd hottest July on record but, surprisingly, there was only 1 heat wave lasting 4 days. During that spell, there was a new record set on the 22nd of the month at 103 degrees! July 2010 was the third hottest July on record with two-3 day heat waves.  The longer the heat lingers, the greater the impact because it is accumulative and increasingly stressful to the human body. Check out these heat tips. Compare our heat to the stats out in the drier heat areas of the Southwestern States where excessive heat warnings have been up for days. As examples, Las Vegas has baked in more than 110 degrees for the past 8 days and Salt Lake City has been over 100 for 8 consecutive days.

The anticipated highs of 96, 95 and 93 for the next 3 days will not break the records of 101, 101 and 99 respectively. Nevertheless, it’s going to feel like 100-104 degrees during the next couple of afternoons. The baking heat will be driven onto the east-facing beaches so the only relief will be found in the relatively cold ocean at 60-64 degrees! Through the weekend, high tides will occur from 11am to about noon. The seas will be running 1-3 feet with a few higher swells and the west-southwesterly wind will blow at 10-20 knots. Visibility will be lowered to 5 miles or less in haze and under a mile in any fog patches especially offshore. If you are spending time in the northern mountains this weekend, beware of the high risk of some scattered showers and gusty drenching thunderstorms. Higher summit temperatures will be in the 60s and 70s but it will be a challenging climb in the heat at lower elevations. Staying hydrated is key. Any outdoors time anywhere this weekend warrants sunscreen application due to the very high UV Index.

The huge Bermuda high pressure heat pumper is sending plentiful hot air into the Northeast over the next several days. The closer proximity of the high pressure system will make for a more stable environment over southern New England supporting only some small puffy clouds today. The risk of showers and boomers increases sharply over portions of northern New England. The risk bumps up a bit north and west of Boston tomorrow then ramps up Sunday afternoon mainly near and north of the MA Pike. A more widespread outbreak of showers and storms is foreseen on Monday perhaps commencing before midday. Additional batches of showery weather are destined to shift through our region next Tuesday and Thursday. The strong high pressure shows signs of decay starting late this weekend with the jet stream eventually digging into the Great Lakes and the Northeast. It may become a bit less humid during next week and with a return of a more west to northwesterly flow aloft late in the week, I am becoming optimistic about some real relief a bout a week from today. The new pattern is more favorable for a series whipping out of central Canada delivering shots of much more comfortable air. Hallelujah!

Joe Joyce will post the next blog early this evening.

Have a happy and safe holiday weekend.

 

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