The heat is on across Acadiana as highs have been consistently in the mid-90s. Heat index values have been in the triple digits (103-108) through the past few afternoons, but are only near 100 today. This is due to a weak front that has moved in from the northeast, bringing in slightly drier air and lower dewpoints. This is keeping heat index values manageable, but make sure you stay hydrated out there as heat-related illness can start to occur even with heat index values in the 90s.

The reason we’re seeing this heat is due to a dome of high pressure currently sitting across the central United States. This is bringing hot temperatures, some 8-10 degrees above normal, as far north as the Dakotas. Interestingly enough, troughs on each side of this ridge are bringing temperatures well below normal to the northern Rockies and New England.

This ridge will remain in control of our weather through the week ahead, leading to hot temperatures. Highs will favor the mid-90s Tuesday and Wednesday, rising into the upper 90s to near 100 by Thursday, Friday, and Saturday.

High-resolution models are depicting subtle disturbances moving along the southern side of this ridge this week. This may be enough, along with sea breeze mechanisms, to produce a few isolated storms each afternoon. Rain chances will be low (10-20%) as storms will be hard-pressed to form with so much high pressure, but any storms that do manage to form could be quite strong, containing frequent cloud-to-ground lightning and gusty winds.

High temperatures could approach records Thursday, Friday, and Saturday. The record on Thursday is 100, while the records on Friday and Saturday are 102 and 100 respectively. How hot we get each afternoon will be very dependent on the isolated storm action the atmosphere can muster up each day. Of course, more numerous storms, or storms forming early in the day, can produce cloud cover and cooler air, which could halt the temperature rise that given day. Hopefully, we’ll receive the cooling storms each afternoon, which could stop us from reaching triple-digit heat, but we’ll be close by the end of the week and the weekend.