UPDATE 11:10 PM, 7/3: Hot as a firecracker with some stormy fireworks possible through July 4th and beyond
UPDATE 11:10 PM, 7/3: Happy Fourth of July everyone! Happy 236th Birthday, America! A special salute to all the utility linemen, our local workers and those from other states who are residing in our area this holiday getting our power back on. Similar weather on Wednesday — hot, highs ranging from upper 80s west of Roanoke to mid 90s Roanoke Valley south and east. Afternoon pop-up storms, some of which could be strong to locally severe, as happened Tuesday. And we’ll keep an eye on developments to our northwest to see if a strong storm cluster forms and slides southeast at us again — it is a possibility, and more of a chance Wednesday than later in the week. Looks like we’re going to warm up again, with some 100-degree readings possible Thursday and Friday, before what could be a substantial cooldown early next week. Hope to get a more extensive post on future weather developments up in the near future. END UPDATE
UPDATE 12:30 PM, 7/3: At this time, it appears more typical summer pop-up storms will be the order of the afternoon, though some could become locally severe (while others, locally, get nothing). More organized convection is possible this evening if activity from the west in Kentucky organizes and moves our way, or sends out outflow breezes that trigger new storms. The storm clusters near the Great Lakes are likely to stay well north of our area today. END UPDATE
Hot days will be the constant through the remainder of this holiday week — lots of highs in the 90s. The high that caused the extreme heat is starting to weaken and shift west away from us, but it’s not positioned where it can help funnel in much cooler air. We continue in a northwest flow aloft, which raises the specter any day of storm clusters forming in the Ohio Valley and moving southeastward, like Friday night’s derecho and Sunday night/early Monday’s bow echo in the New River Valley and south (which for some locations was worse than the bigger derecho was). There has been some indication that it might happen again Tuesday night (a storm cluster, not necessarily a derecho), but model signals are not certain. Storms may also form west of the Appalachians in Kentucky with a lingering moisture axis, and east of the mountains with a “lee trough,” a weak area of surface low pressure that often forms in the summer months. It’s kind of a watch-and-see mode on radar where storms develop Tuesday and Wednesday, the Fourth of July. The Hydrometeorological Prediction Center is certain enough in storms developing over our area to put the region in .25-.50 rain Tuesday night through Wednesday night. That would probably mean a few spots getting 1-2 inches in storms, and other spots getting much less, even nothing for some.