Welcome to the 2019 Atlantic hurricane season, which begins today (June 1) and lasts through November 30. This is the climatologically favored time for tropical systems to develop in the Atlantic basin (though we have had our fair share of May storms, including Subtropical Storm Andrea a few weeks ago). A fact of life of living in the Lowcountry — which is a really wonderful place! — is that we are susceptible to tropical cyclones, and as such, must be prepared for the possibility that one may approach the area.
It’s been a while since I’ve been able to say this, but here goes:
The record high of 98°, set in 1953, is safe today.
Temperatures will only top out in the mid-90s before thunderstorms — yes, thunderstorms with actual rain — start to develop by mid-afternoon. A few of these thunderstorms may be on the strong side, though.
We continue to rewrite the record books as a strong ridge of high pressure remains firmly entrenched over the Charleston area, with three straight days of 100° temperatures and counting. The streak may continue for one more day, followed by a gradual falloff of temperatures (and a small increase in shower and thunderstorm chances) as we get into the weekend.
After a record-breaking Memorial Day weekend, the heat wave continues as stifling high pressure remains in force over the Charleston metro area. Temperatures approaching the century mark away from the immediate coast are once again expected. While heat indices will not pose a major issue, low humidity will instead elevate the wildfire risk. Changes are coming later this week, though.
We will make another run at the century mark today, with a decent chance of at least tying the all-time May high temperature record set yesterday (100°). In fact, this morning’s NWS forecast has the airport breaking that record once again today. While there is no Heat Advisory today as heat indices will remain below 105° (pre-July 1 threshold), it will still be plenty hot (even at the beaches, where low 90s are possible) and you should still keep heat safety precautions in mind when observing Memorial Day today.
Temperatures are expected to hit 100° away from the coast this afternoon. If this forecast verifies, it would be the earliest a 100° temperature has been recorded at the North Charleston climate site since records began in 1938. Combined with humidity, this will feel more like 103°-107°. Heat Advisory will be in effect from 11am-8pm. Heat safety is a must today — fluids, shade, rest! More on the heat wave later today.
Today is day one of a potentially long-duration, early-season heat wave that will continue into at least next week. Record heat is forecast today, with a high of 98° expected. If this verifies, this would break the record of 97° set in 1953. Air conditioning is best today (and for the next several days), but if you must be outside, take frequent breaks, drink lots of water, and seek shade regularly.
High pressure is aligning at the surface and aloft to bring us quite the early-season heat wave starting tomorrow, featuring a run at the all-time warmest May day on record and little to no rain for many of us.
Today is the “calm before the warm” as the pattern begins to kick into place for a significant, long-duration heat wave starting tomorrow. (More on that later today.) A shower or storm can’t be ruled out early today, but as the ridge builds, clouds will decrease. The vast majority of us remain bone dry. Temperatures will range from the upper 80s in the Charleston metro to the low 90s closer to I-95.
Summer-like weather will continue this week. The heat will really turn on by the end of the week, as we look to flirt with mid-to-upper 90s temperatures across much of the area. Unfortunately, very little heat relief in the way of thunderstorms appears probable after Tuesday.