Record-breaking heatwave scorches the South and West, while the Northeast faces more rain and wind

The US is experiencing extreme weather conditions this weekend, with millions of people under heat alerts in the South and West, and flash flood warnings in the Northeast. The heatwave is expected to shatter many temperature records, while the rain and wind could cause damage and disruption.


Heat dome intensifies over the South and West

A heat dome is a high-pressure system that traps hot air and prevents it from escaping. This phenomenon is causing oppressive heat and humidity in the South and West, where more than 31 million people are under heat warnings and advisories. Some areas in the South could see temperatures reaching 100 degrees Fahrenheit or higher, while some parts of the West could exceed 120 degrees.

The National Weather Service (NWS) said that dozens of heat records could fall this weekend, adding to more than 1,000 high-temperature records broken in US cities since June. Some of the cities that could see record-breaking heat are:

  • Las Vegas, Nevada: The city reached 114 degrees on Saturday and is predicted to hit 118 degrees on Sunday, topping its previous all-time record of 117.
  • Death Valley, California: The hottest place on Earth recorded 125 degrees on Saturday, and has a chance of reaching 130 degrees on Sunday, not far from its all-time record of 134 in July 1913.
  • Phoenix, Arizona: The city has experienced highs of at least 110 degrees since the beginning of the month, and is on pace to beat its longest streak of 18 consecutive days of 110 or higher in 1974. The NWS in Phoenix called the heatwave “one of the strongest high pressure systems this region has ever seen”.
  • New Orleans, Louisiana: The city broke its single-day record for March 25 by 5 degrees on Wednesday, reaching 89 degrees. It also tied its all-time record high for March at the airport.

The NWS urged people to stay hydrated, avoid outdoor activities during the hottest part of the day, and check on vulnerable groups such as the elderly and pets. The heatwave also poses a risk of wildfires, power outages, and heat-related illnesses.

Rain and wind batter the Northeast

While the South and West are baking, the Northeast is facing more rain and wind, with the potential for flash flooding and severe thunderstorms. A large storm system is moving across the country, bringing heavy snow to the Rockies and the Plains, and rain to the Midwest and the Great Lakes.

The storm will stretch all the way down to the Gulf Coast, where severe weather and damaging winds are possible from Louisiana to Tennessee. The heaviest rain will be from Illinois to Indiana and Ohio, where some areas could see more than 3 inches of rain, which could cause flooding.

The New York City Emergency Management Department issued a travel advisory for Sunday, as the city is expected to experience showers and thunderstorms through Sunday evening. The severe weather could lead to widespread rainfall of up to 3 to 5 inches in some parts of the city, and there is a risk of flash flooding in certain areas. There is also a chance of torrential rains further north, creating a dangerous flash flood risk for much of New England, including Vermont, which was swamped last week with deadly flooding.

The NWS advised people to avoid driving through flooded roads, and to seek shelter if they hear thunder or see lightning. The rain and wind could also cause power outages, fallen trees, and travel delays.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *