Author: Jared Smith

Jared Smith founded @chswx on Twitter in 2008 as an experiment in disseminating weather data through social media. Somehow, it caught on, and he kept doing it.

More 80s for Friday the 13th

/ March 12, 2020 at 11:06 PM

Temperatures head back into the 80s tomorrow under partly cloudy skies. We may see an isolated shower or thunderstorm kick off in the afternoon, but the vast majority of us look to remain dry throughout the day. Best chances for any rainfall look to be closer to I-95 than the Charleston metro area, but we’ll want to see how the mesoscale details sort themselves out as this pattern has a bit of a summer-like feel to it.

While 83° is rather toasty for mid-March — a normal March 13th tops out around 69° — it’s not a record. That dubious honor goes to March 13, 1990, when the high temperature at Charleston International Airport reached 88°.

Another warm day ahead for Thursday

/ March 11, 2020 at 10:50 PM

Well, at least the weather’s going to be decent on Thursday. Partly cloudy skies will allow temperatures to once again approach 80°, and the lack of any triggers for convection makes any rain chance negligible.

While these temperatures are well above normal — a high of 69° and low of 46° mark a more typical March 12th based on 1981-2010 averages — the NWS forecast high of 78° is not a record. It’s not even close, in fact. The record high for March 12 is 89°, set in 1973. Now, if we don’t get cooler than 62°, we’d tie or break the record warmest low temperature for the date, set in 1985. So, while it’s rather warm, it isn’t unprecedented to get even warmer this time of year.

A few showers and maybe some thunder Wednesday afternoon

/ March 10, 2020 at 6:37 PM

Another warm day is on tap for Wednesday, with highs topping out in the mid-to-upper 70s across the area (away from the locally cooler coastline, anyway). Most of the day looks dry, but some showers and maybe a thunderstorm or two will be possible in the afternoon as an upper disturbance swings on by. Not expecting anything too crazy, but there may be some raindrops near the commute, so that will be worth watching.

The South Carolina Tornado Drill, weather permitting, will take place at 9am Wednesday. The National Weather Service will send a test tornado warning that will cause NOAA Weather Radio to sound a tone as if a real warning were occurring, but this warning will not go out over cell phones or other alerting systems. (I’ve got a tweet queued up for 9am as well.) Use this time to practice your tornado safety plan! If you participate, tag me in a photo on your favorite social media platform and I’ll share it!

Tuesday: Still warm, maybe a shower

/ March 9, 2020 at 10:19 PM

Despite more cloud cover on Tuesday, expect temperatures to once again top out in the low-to-mid-70s as southerly surface flow remains in place. There’s a slight chance of a shower or two as disturbances pass to our north, but the vast majority of us get through Tuesday high and dry.

Wash your hands.

The week ahead: Fast-forward to April

/ March 8, 2020 at 5:29 PM

After a seasonably cool weekend in the wake of a decently strong early-March cold front, temperatures will head back above normal for the upcoming week. Scattered showers will be possible for much of the work week as a series of disturbances aloft ripple through the area. Fortunately, we won’t see the moisture surge and the subsequent sustained heavy rain that we saw last week.

For perspective: Normal highs for March 9-15 are in the mid-to-upper 60s. Highs in the mid-70s for a fair bit of the week are much more characteristic of this time next month.

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A cool and sunny weekend ahead

/ March 5, 2020 at 11:37 PM

After over an inch and a half of rain today that caused flooding in downtown Charleston, we are going to see a nice break for a few days with plenty of sunshine. Temperatures will run cooler than normal for early March with highs in the low 60s Friday and Sunday. Saturday will be even cooler in the wake of a dry cold front that swings through sometime Friday afternoon.

Friday will be pretty windy, with gusts 30-35 MPH possible across the area. NWS notes in its forecast discussion that there is the potential for gusts to 40 MPH on elevated roadways (read: the Cooper River and Wando bridges), so be extra cautious when driving.

Next rain chance could arrive as soon as next Tuesday, but for now, enjoy drying out!

Soggy and chilly Thursday ahead

/ at 12:00 AM

We have a soggy Thursday ahead as a strong upper-level disturbance drives low pressure through the Gulf Coast states along a stalled front. Said disturbance will arrive with copious amounts of moisture to produce heavy rainfall, perhaps on the tune of 1-2″ on top of the 3/4-inch rainfall we’ve already received across much of the area on Wednesday. This may cause some concerns about localized flooding, particularly this afternoon near high tide. (More about that in a sec.) Rain will come to an end across the area Thursday evening as low pressure heads northeast, turning winds to the northwest and drying us out.

Temperatures will remain in the mid-to-upper 50s on Thursday as we look to remain in the cool sector of the storm for the duration of the event. While there could be some wobbles in the position of the aforementioned front, it’s expected to remain south of the area.

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Warmth and scattered showers for Tuesday

/ March 2, 2020 at 11:58 PM

Warm weather continues across the Lowcountry for Tuesday, as we remain ahead of a cold front to the north. Disturbances embedded within the upper-air flow will bring periodic shower chances for early morning and again in the late afternoon/early evening. Don’t be totally shocked if we hear some rumbles of thunder, either, but don’t count on it, either. Bottom line: Keep rain gear nearby and be ready for a slower evening commute.

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February’s pattern continues into March

/ March 1, 2020 at 10:24 PM

Stop me if you’ve heard this one before: We’ll kick off the work week in the 70s, with rain chances building in later in the day Monday and sticking around through early Friday before a front pushes through, taking the rain with it and dropping temperatures to the upper 50s for Saturday and Sunday. Yes, despite the change in the calendar, we have not turned the page on the unsettled pattern that you can basically set your watch to at this point.

Monday should be mostly dry, but be ready for a chance of showers during the evening commute. Best rain chances arrive after dark.

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Fifth-warmest climatological winter on record comes to a close

/ at 8:37 AM

The calendar has turned to March, and with that comes the end of meteorological winter. Meteorological winter runs from the first of December to the end of February, and what a warm winter it was: With an average temperature of 54.8°, it was the fifth-warmest winter on record at Charleston International Airport since record-keeping began at that site in 1938. At Downtown Charleston (Waterfront Park), it was the ninth warmest winter on record, with an average temperature of 55.6°. (Records downtown started in 1893.)

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