HOTTER AFTERNOONS: Heat levels will be creeping up in coming days as an upper ridge builds across the Deep South. We project a high in the 87- to 90-degree range today, followed by 90- to 93-degree heat over the weekend. Look for mostly sunny days and fair nights; an afternoon shower or two can’t be ruled out, but odds of any one spot getting wet are only 10% Saturday and Sunday.
NEXT WEEK: Moisture levels will rise, the air becomes more unstable and we expect an increase in the number of showers and thunderstorms, especially Tuesday and Wednesday. The high Monday will be close to 90, but then afternoon temperatures will drop back into the 80s for the rest of the week with an increase in clouds and showers. Rain distribution won’t be especially even, but many communities have a chance of seeing one-half inch to 1 inch during the week.
TROPICS: The Atlantic basin remains very quiet, and tropical storm formation is not expected through next week. The Saharan Air Layer could reach the Southeast U.S. next week, giving potential for vivid sunrise and sunset skies due to the dust from the African continent.
ON THIS DATE IN 1972: Hurricane Agnes made landfall on Florida’s Panhandle near Cape San Blas with winds of 75 mph. Storm tides 5-6 feet above normal caused erosion and flooding along the coast of the Panhandle that resulted in $12 million (in 1972 U.S. dollars) in property damage. Fifteen tornadoes spawned by the hurricane also produced damage in the state. Hurricane Agnes took 130 lives along its path, 113 of which were a direct result of flooding over the eastern half of the nation. Total damages from Hurricane Agnes amounted to about $2.1 billion (1972 USD), making it the most costly U.S. hurricane at the time. The Category 1 status of the storm as it passed over Florida largely spared the state. Hurricane Agnes is a good example of how destructive weak storms can be.
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