Hermine strengthens, Baton Rouge area remains hot and dry
Afternoon feels-like temperatures will continue to eclipse 100 degrees through the week.
Today and Tonight: Run it again—Thursday will bring very similar weather to Wednesday with mostly sunny skies and highs in the mid 90s. Overnight lows will be in the mid 70s under mainly clear skies.
Up Next: By Friday, the possibility of an isolated shower or thunderstorm returns to the forecast but rain coverage across the area will stay very low. Therefore, highs will stay up in the mid 90s with plenty of sun continuing. A weak cold front could potentially cross the area Late Friday allowing lows to flirt with the upper 60s on Saturday Morning. Make no mistake though, summer weather will continue with highs in the low 90s and pop-up showers and thunderstorms through Labor Day. By Monday, shower and thunderstorm coverage will be back in the 40 percent range across the 13 Parish, 3 County forecast area however a washout is not expected.
The Tropics: As of 7am Thursday, there were three active areas being monitored in the Atlantic Basin. The National Hurricane Center is issuing advisories on three systems.
Tropical Storm Hermine strengthened overnight and now packs maximum sustained winds of 65mph with a minimum central pressure of 992mb. 190 miles south of Apalachicola, Florida, the storm is moving north-northeast at 12mph. Hermine is now expected to become a hurricane just before landfall with winds peaking around 75mph. Hurricane Warnings are in place from the Suwanee River to Mexico Beach. Tropical Storm Warnings stretch from Central Florida through South Georgia and Southeastern South Carolina. Rainfall of 6-10”+ of rain is expected with tropical storm force winds and isolated tornadoes in and around the warning area. Along the coast, there will be a storm surge of 3-5’. Locally, coastal winds will be elevated and thus a Coastal Flood Advisory is in effect through Friday Morning as waters could swell 2’ above normal.
Hurricane Gaston remains in the open waters of the Atlantic Ocean with maximum sustained winds of 85mph. The storm will stay on an east-northeast trek out to sea, speeding up and weakening by the end of the week.
Invest 92L is a weak wave moving across the Tropical Atlantic. Shower and thunderstorm activity is minimal right now as the wave interacts with a lot of dry air and dust. If it can survive, more favorable conditions are expected as the storm moves west with a 20 percent chance of further development over the next five days.
Certainly continue to monitor tropical forecasts as the peak of hurricane season nears. Take this time to review hurricane preparedness and have your game plan installed should it be needed.
Forecast Discussion: With an upper level ridge in place through Friday, subsidence will keep rain chances low and temperatures above average. Tropical Storm Hermine continues toward the Big bend of Florida with the only local impact being elevated tides. Over the weekend, the same trough axis that steered Hermine away from Louisiana will drive a weak front into the area. Some weak forcing associated with the trough and front may enhance rain chances just a bit but with lower moisture content, coverage shouldn’t be too great. If the front can clear Louisiana before washing out, humidity could briefly tick down on Saturday. Some northern locations finding lows in the upper 60s is a possibility. For Sunday and Labor Day, beneath another ridge a few weak easterly waves may help to bring more afternoon shower and thunderstorm development to the area, but no long-weekend plans will be washed out.