Jeff, Lindner, Harris County’s meteorologist, predicts strong to severe storms Saturday that could bring heavy rains. He says most locations will receive .50 to 1.5 inches of rain. But some isolated areas could see 2- 3 inches.
Near Record Warmth Again with Moist, Onshore Flow
According to Lindner, record and near record warmth will continue for one more day across the area before a cold front arrives on Saturday bringing temperatures back to near normal.
The combination of moist onshore flow and a warm start to today should elevate temperatures into the low 80s this afternoon. That will be at or near record highs again.
“Records have fallen at local climate sites nearly each day this week as the incredibly warm December continues,” says Lindner.
Colliding Cold Front from North
As a cold front from north Texas moves south tonight and into Saturday, widespread showers and thunderstorms will develop along and ahead of it. The very moist air ahead of the front will cause instability when it arrives. A few of the storms on Saturday could become strong to severe.
The front should move out into the Gulf by Saturday evening and temperatures will fall into the 40s, says Lindner.
Second Disturbance Arriving Sunday from Mexico
Yet another disturbance moving northeastward out of Mexico on Sunday will increase cloud cover and bring more light rains. But Lindner thinks most of the heavy rains will remain offshore. He predicts drizzle for much of the region on Sunday and Monday with temperatures holding in the forties and fifties. After that temperatures should increase again.
The current forecast for Christmas looks warm.
La Niña Likely Affecting Current Weather
Daily temperature records continue to fall at several climate sites both for highs and “warm” lows. This December is among the top five warmest Decembers at all local climate monitoring stations. And this is THE warmest December ever at Galveston.
Many records also fell on Wednesday across the central plains and Midwest. Wisconsin had the warmest December temperature ever recorded in modern times at 72.
The powerful storms that swept across the plains on Wednesday also brought the first ever recorded tornadoes in the month of December to Minnesota and Wisconsin.
The cyclical La Niña weather pattern that we are now in likely contributes to the record temperatures. La Niñas are typically warmer than El Niño patterns. The two alternate in the Pacific and influence patterns of the jet stream. NOAA and the National Weather service predict the current La Niña will continue through spring next year.
Posted by Bob Rehak on December 17, 2021, based on a report by Harris County Meteorologist Jeff Lindner
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