New Jersey to endure another day of heat, humidity, and spot storms
90+ degree temperatures are in the forecast for one more day, although the high humidity and scattered rain chances will continue through the rest of the week.
Here are your weather headlines for Tuesday, August 18, 2015...
Tue & Wed: Mostly Dry
Monday's high temperature at Newark Liberty International Airport reached a steamy 97 degrees, tying the record for August 17 set in 1987. No records were broken in Trenton or Atlantic City yesterday with highs of 94° and 91° respectively, although our heat wave continued for another day.
We started Tuesday with a band of moderate to heavy rain in North Jersey. There's no real atmospheric steering mechanism here, so it's been slowly meandering northward. The rain has led to some wet roads, large puddles, and reduced visibility impacting this morning's commute. This band of rain should fizzle and/or move out of the state by later in the morning.
The big weather story for Tuesday will still be the heat and humidity. (Although we will embark upon a cooling trend over the next few days, thanks to clouds and rain chances.) Today's high temperatures will range in the upper 80s to lower 90s for most of New Jersey, with some relief again along the Jersey Shore beaches. So yes, the heat wave (consecutive 90+ degree days) will continue for part of the state for another day.
Aside from this morning's continuing band of rain, we're keeping an isolated shower or storm in the forecast today, mainly for North Jersey.
On Wednesday, the Garden State should avoid 90s on the thermometer. Regardless, humidity levels will remain very uncomfortable. Meanwhile, tomorrow's precipitation forecast is tricky... The models are showing a few showers and thunderstorms pushing through the state throughout the day. But the forecast rainfall totals are very light, and I don't have a great handle on the background dynamics driving the rain chances. Wednesday will probably end up mostly dry for most of New Jersey. Just don't be surprised to see a few raindrops as the day goes along.
Thu & Fri: Pretty Wet
The best chance for widespread rain for New Jersey this week will come Thursday into Friday. The timing of this system is still a bit up in the air, as are the exact weather impacts.
The bottom line here... At some point on Thursday, scattered showers and thunderstorms will move in. The GFS model says rain by about 2 p.m. on Thursday. NAM says the rain holds off until after 8 p.m. Thursday night. Marginal rainfall amounts of less than an inch are currently forecast for Thursday night through Friday. We are going to carefully monitor for locally higher amounts and the chance for isolated severe weather too.
Just as we've seen several times so far this summer, the cold front associated with Friday's rain may stall and turn around as a warm front this weekend. That would keep unsettled weather in the forecast for Saturday and Sunday - i.e. a continual chance for showers and thunderstorms. Let me stress that this is a low-confidence forecast... if that front doesn't creep northward, we stay high and dry for the weekend. We should have a better handle on the situation later in the week.
In either case, temperatures should remain pleasant and seasonable for the weekend in the lower to mid 80s.
Two More Notes
Our long-range forecast has an impressive cold front sweeping through New Jersey next Monday night into Tuesday. That will drop temperatures a bit and especially cause humidity to plummet. Could we get a brief taste of early fall weather as a result?
The Tropics are also showing signs of activity, as a disturbance off the west coast of Africa will likely develop into a Tropical Depression and/or Tropical Storm soon. Certainly worth watching, but with a great deal of patience... It's still way too early to tell whether this system will have any impact on the U.S. East Coast.