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Just Another Muggy Monday

Steve Scolnik @ 3:50 PM


With the help of the moisture from thunderstorms which blew through around dawn this morning, the muggometer is back on the "sauna" setting. Although temperatures at mid afternoon were barely into the 90s in most locations around the Washington metro area, they were combining with dewpoints in the mid to upper 70s to produce heat indexes in the 3-digit range. At 3pm, the ever-precocious Leesburg was reporting a combination of 99/82, which if correct, produced an index at the heat-stroke level of 124. The nearest rival to Leesburg was its cross-Potomac twin, Frederick, which reported the palindromic readings of 97/79.


With this level of mugginess, temperatures will have a hard time getting below 80 in the city tonight, upper 70s in the suburbs. Tomorrow, the blast furnace really opens up, with "upper brackets" likely. One model's output from this morning's data has the temperature already at 93 by 11am tomorrow and the high at 102. While this might be possible at over-achievers like Leesburg, for the rest of the area 96-98 looks more like it. If we do reach the upper 90s, it will be the hottest since August 2002, when it was as high as 100 on the 13th.

Tropical Topics

The tropics are somewhat quieter than recent days. Gert, which looked more like a large clump of thunderstorms than a minimal tropical storm, is already dissipating after making landfall near Tampico on the Mexican Gulf Coast.

Franklin, with maximum sustained winds of 40 mph, has been meandering around west-southwest of Bermuda, even backtracking a bit last night. Recent forecast tracks have been taking it more to the north of the island by the middle of the week.

There are tropical waves in the eastern and central Atlantic and western Caribbean, but no significant development is expected through tomorrow.

Blast from the past

Pepco was still repairing damage last night from Friday night's storm. Since the storm occurred too late for most of us to see the radar, some folks have been asking if there are any archives available. It's rather low-res, since it covers the entire northeastern U.S., and it's available only every 30 minutes, but the Ohio State Atmospheric Sciences weather server has a nice archive of radar images. The storms originated as a line from south-central Pennsylvania through central Maryland to northern Virginia. At 11:05pm, there was an intense cell in northern Frederick County, MD. This weakened during the next half-hour as it moved southeastward into northern Montgomery County. By 12:35am, the storm had re-intensified to the red (55+ dbz) level over most of the eastern half of Montgomery County. The storm continued moving south-southeast into the eastern half of the District and northern Prince George's County.

Broadcast News/Political Science

Sen. Santorum (R-PA) is the announced guest on the Comedy Central Daily Show tonight. There is no word on whether he intends to discuss his National Weather Service proposals.

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