Record Stretch Continues:
The excessive heat that we experienced from May 10-12th back in 2011 is quickly becoming a distant memory as record highs continue to fall. Yesterday, the Rockford Airport came in with a high of 94°, shattering the previous record of 91°.
This is the earliest that we’ve hit a high temperature of 94° or higher since early May of 1934. For those already looking for a break from this early season heat and humidity, that comes in the form of a strong cold front over the weekend. Until then, the excessive heat continues.
Another day of hazy sunshine lies ahead, with highs soaring into the low 90s for the 3rd straight day. All it takes is for our high to get above 87° and you can kiss another record high goodbye. With dew points sitting close to 70-degrees, you can expect heat index values to be mid 90.
Again, if you have to be outdoors for a prolonged period of time, please be safe. Make sure to drink PLENTY of fluids, take FREQUENT breaks in the shade, and use LOTS of sunscreen to avoid getting sun burn. Conditions remain fairly quiet under mostly clear skies, with temperatures falling into the mid to upper 60s by Friday morning. I think tonight will be a little more comfortable considering dew points are expected to drop into the mid to upper 60s.
Much of Friday will be spent under a mixture of clouds and sunshine. However, a slow-moving cold front will bring the chance for a few showers, even the potential for a few thunderstorms by Friday evening and Friday night. Last night, the Storm Prediction Center expanded the Slight Risk (level 2 of 5) eastward to include more of the region.
The biggest concerns with any storm that goes severe will be damaging winds, heavy rainfall, and small to medium-sized hail. The actual cold front doesn’t pass on through the region until Saturday night into Sunday morning. When it does, a cooler air-mass will settle in behind it, allowing highs to fall back towards seasonable levels. Highs over the weekend fall from the low 80s Saturday to the low 70s on Sunday, and it looks like that’s where temperatures will remain into next week.