As a hot and humid air mass invades the Philadelphia and New York City metropolitan areas this morning, a strong upper level disturbance and cold front will approach from the west. This cold front will bring the threat for strong to severe thunderstorms this afternoon capable of very heavy downpours, wind gusts exceeding 50 mph, large hail, frequent lightning, and an isolated tornado. Temperatures ahead of this cold front will rise into the 80’s to lower 90’s with dew points in the 70’s leading to a heat index near 100 degrees for eastern Pennsylvania and much of New Jersey.
The cold front will exit tonight with clearing skies but not much of a change in the air mass in place for this weekend. A slight drop in humidity will last through the morning hours tomorrow but will be quickly replaced by the same hot and humid air mass in place now. Sound familiar? If this forecast does, it is because the Eastern United States remains locked in the same pattern where the northern Mid Atlantic is on the front lines between a very strong heat ridge over the Mississippi Valley to the Southeast coast and an equally strong upper low over the Canadian Maritimes. As a result, the Philadelphia and New York City metropolitan area will remain under the influence of a hot and humid air mass through this weekend and into next week. This air mass will feature above normal temperatures with highs in the 80’s to lower 90’s and lows in the 60’s to mid 70’s with high levels of humidity. This pattern will also continue to keep the threat of thunderstorms, at times severe, in the forecast each afternoon through next week.
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