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The week ahead...

Jason Samenow @ 9:18 AM

Even though the season switches over to fall this week, the weather will continue to be summerlike. Temperatures will be above average every day and the dry spell will continue with only a slight chance of rain one day (tomorrow).

Today will be sunny and warm, with highs in the upper 80s.

A cold front moves through tomorrow afternoon, and there is a 30% chance of scattered late afternoon and evening thunderstorms. A few of these could be severe. This is the only day during the week with any reasonable probability of rain, but it is not the kind of rain we need as it will be short lived and scattered.

High pressure will be in control of our weather Wednesday through Sunday. It will be a rather nice stretch with warm afternoons and pleasantly cool evenings coupled with comfortable humidity levels. Look for highs generally 80-85 and lows from the mid 50s in the suburbs to the low 60s downtown. The warmer highs should occur at the end of the period (mid 80s), with the cooler highs (low 80s) at the beginning.

Average highs are now in the upper 70s with average lows near 60 downtown (55-60 suburbs). Interestingly, the last 10 days have been above average, with only two days this month below average and by only 1 degree.

Tropical Update

Philippe has become a hurricane but will be a fish storm as he continues northward in the open Atlantic.

All eyes are now on Tropical Storm Rita which is strengthening and should pass through the Florida straits, south of Key West. After that, guidance has shifted east which means the probability of landfall along the U.S. Gulf Cooast is high. Right now, track guidance brings the storms towards northeast Texas or western Louisiana. Given the eastward shift in the guidance, areas as far east as the Florida panhandle need to watch this storm. New Orleans could well be affected by Rita, which would be horrible. Unfortunately, as folks in Florida remember last year, history can sometimes repeat itself. The intensity forecast is difficult, but this storm does have the potential to become a major hurricane in the Gulf (Category 3).

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