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Yesterday's storms, recent heat and the forecast

Jason Samenow @ 11:32 PM

To my surprise (and most forecasters), the strong line of storms which developed over the Ohio Valley yesterday held together over the mountains producing heavy rains and strong winds in many places. Areas north and east of the city (from College Park to Baltimore) caught the brunt of the action. Seems like that has been the case a lot this summer. See these storm damage reports. Kevin Ambrose of captured a nice shot of the gust front (the windy boundary that separates a cold downdraft of a thunderstorm from warm, humid surface air) as it moved over the city.

Unfortunately, the airmass conducive to yesterday's storms was also the likely cause of the death of a three-year old girl in Mechanicsville, VA on Tuesday. San Francisco University (SFU) reports 20 children have died in hot vehicles already this year. It is tragic, especially because these kinds of heat-related deaths are so senseless and preventable. I like this quote from this SFU site:
Parents and caregivers need to get the word that a car is not a babysitter...but it can easily become an oven.
Many people are surprised to learn that heat kills more people annually than hurricanes, tornadoes, earthquakes and floods combined in the U.S. Most heat-related deaths occur in unairconditioned buildings during heat waves.

Fortunately, the oppressive heat and humidity and the torrents of rain are about done for the time being. There may be some lingering showers this morning before slow clearing this afternoon. By this evening, the air will be noticeably cooler and drier. The detailed forecast for Friday and the weekend will be posted late tonight or early tomorrow morning, but you know it's going to be good...

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