As discussed in Friday’s blog, we still expect the dangerous heat affecting the Southwest to crawl eastward this week.
A centered ridge in the Southwest has begun to widen and will continue to widen as we move into the week. This will cause temperatures to soar east of the Rockies.
I know I wrote about this on Friday, as mentioned earlier, but I wanted to bring it up again today as the heat is likely to become dangerous for many as this week passes.
Those of us east of the Rockies are used to humid air when the currents are usually south, off the coast of the Gulf of Mexico. We also know that as the dew point and temperature rise, the weather outside becomes increasingly uncomfortable. That’s what’s happening next week.
As heat and humidity increase, the “feels like” temperature will become increasingly dangerous. Over the weekend, a large portion of the eastern half of the US could experience heat readings of 100 degrees or more. This is likely to lead to Heat Recommendations and Excessive Heat Warnings/Warnings being widely disseminated.
- Heat advisories are issued when the maximum index temperature is expected to be more than 100 degrees for 2 days or more. Also, expect nighttime temperatures above 75 degrees.
- This definition can vary from region to region as some regions are more accustomed to hotter temperatures than others.
- Excessive Temperature Warnings are issued when conditions are expected to become favorable for an extreme temperature event over the next 24 to 72 hours.
- An overheat warning is issued when the maximum expected maximum heat index reaches or exceeds 105 degrees for a minimum of 2 days. In addition, nighttime air temperatures during this time are not expected to drop below 75 degrees.
- As with the Temperature Recommendation, this definition may vary by region.
For more on heat advice/clocks/warnings, see the NWS page found This.
As mentioned in the definitions above, while daytime highs are important in alert/advisory, night lows are equally important.
As you can see from the map above, much of the eastern US will experience low temperatures at night that don’t drop below 75 degrees. This puts stress on the body.
The body uses cooler temperatures at night to reestablish daytime heat. If the night is not cool enough, the body cannot reset and is prone to heat exhaustion/stroke.
So, what can you do to help yourself (and others) when the heat subsides?
- Reduce or rearrange outdoor activities to avoid exposure to the sun and extreme heat.
- Wear light, loose, light-colored clothing.
- Keep water. Drink water even if you don’t feel thirsty.
- Stay as cool as you can.
- Use air conditioning if available.
- Close the sunshade during the day to reduce the indoor temperature.
- Take a cool shower or bath if needed.
- Check up on your friends, family and neighbors – especially if they are older or sick. Make sure they stay calm and offer help if needed.
These and other tips can be found through National Weather Service.
It looks like the heat will last for at least the next week – especially in the Central and South/Southeast states. Of course, we will keep you updated with the latest information. Stay safe and stay calm!
About the author
Meteorologist – ’22 Mississippi State Writer for Weather.us and Weathermodels.com. Focus on weather communication. BoyMom x1, CatMom x5. Twitter: @MegGulledgeWX