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Cold Front to Sweep Away High Heat and Humidity
In the process, scattered storms likely today

Dan Stillman @ 12:40 PM

After posting highs of 97, 98 and 98 at Reagan National over the past three days, a cold front moving through tonight will bring welcome relief. Standing in the way, however, may be some strong afternoon and evening storms.


Forecast Confidence: Medium-HighHot and humid, PM storms. One more hazy, hot and very humid day. Increasing clouds, especially in the afternoon, ahead of an approaching cold front will likely keep high temperatures to the upper 80s to near 90. As the cold front nears, the metro area stands a 70% chance of afternoon and evening showers and thunderstorms, some of which could be quite strong. Overnight, a lingering chance of showers and storms through midnight as the cold front passes through, then clearing skies with much lower humidity by morning. Lows in the mid-to-upper 60s.

A potentially stormy afternoon and evening today, triggered by an approaching cold front, is the price to pay for cooler and drier weather by tomorrow. Courtesy


Forecast Confidence: High-Very HighSunny skies, drier air. Behind the cold front, a pleasant July day awaits. It'll be sunny with low humidity and highs in the mid 80s. Overnight, partly cloudy as a weak cold front approaches. Lows in the upper 60s in town, low-to-mid 60s in the burbs.


Forecast Confidence: MediumConsiderable clouds, possible PM storms. It looks like a weak cold front will stall out over the area. Thus, after a partly sunny morning, we may very well see a partly to mostly cloudy afternoon and evening with a chance of showers and thunderstorms. As of now, I'd put the odds of precipitation at 40%. Highs should reach the mid 80s and although humidity may be a bit higher, it shouldn't be too bad. Overnight, partly to mostly cloudy with a lingering chance of showers and storms, then partial clearing toward morning. Lows in the upper 60s in town, low-to-mid 60s in the burbs.


Forecast Confidence: MediumEventually sunny. We'll have to keep our eye on low pressure that could develop along the cold front, which may briefly stall out off the coast. That means a chance of lingering clouds and showers in the morning before mostly sunny skies take hold for the afternoon. Or, if the front makes it far enough east, then the DC area might be in the clear much earlier in the day (either way, the beaches would probably be slowest to clear). With humidity still in check, afternoon highs should top out in the mid 80s, maybe upper 80s with a full day of sunshine. Overnight, mostly clear with lows in the upper 60s in town, low-to-mid 60s in the burbs.


Forecast Confidence: Medium-HighWarmer, rising humidity. Flow out of the southwest may gradually increase humidity to moderate levels as highs reach the upper 80s to low 90s. For now, skies look to be partly to mostly sunny, but clouds and storminess to the south bear watching.

WaPo Chat

In case you missed it,'s Steve Scolnik hosted a chat yesterday about the heat. Read the transcript here.

Senate Hearing on Satellites

The Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation will hold a hearing at 10 am today on the state of U.S. weather and environmental satellites. Included in this discussion will be the QuickSCAT satellite, which was the subject of recent infighting among forecasters at the National Hurricane Center.

Last month, then-director of the center Bill Proenza charged that the NHC's parent agency, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, wasn't doing enough to replace the aging spacecraft in a timely manner, and that hurricane forecast accuracy would be compromised if the spacecraft failed before a replacement was launched. Other NHC forecasters and officials at NOAA said the warnings were exaggerated. The controversy climaxed on Monday with Proenza being removed from his position.

A link to the hearing webcast should appear here shortly before the scheduled start time.

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