Published: 2012-06-27 17:39:00
Updated: 2012-06-27 22:59:43
Posted June 27, 2012
Raleigh, N.C. — Expect dangerous and oppressive heat this weekend as high temperatures flirt with triple digit readings and high humidity.
WRAL Chief Meteorologist Greg Fishel said Wednesday that weekend highs in the Triangle could reach as much as 105 degrees and the heat index could make it feel as hot as 112 degrees.
"This is a dangerous, dangerous air mass heading our way," Fishel said.
An excessive heat watch is already in effect for the southeastern part of the state, and a hazardous weather outlook advisory is in effect for central North Carolina.
Temperatures topped out at 87 degrees Wednesday at Raleigh-Durham International Airport and were forecast to climb to the mid-90s by Thursday.
The high temperature is expected to pass the 100-degree mark Friday and continue to climb over the weekend.
Humid air, which began filtering back into the Triangle on Wednesday, will contribute to the heat index.
"We're going to be tacking on about 15 degrees of heat this weekend and increasing the dew point by 20 degrees, which doubles the amount of water vapor in the air," Fishel said. "You can just imagine how different this is going to feel for the human skin."
Afternoon highs could approach historical marks Friday, Saturday and Sunday. A high of 105 degrees on Saturday and Sunday would tie the all-time warmest record ever observed at Raleigh-Durham International Airport.
"Is 106 possible? You bet it is," Fishel said. "This is the kind of air mass that has the potential to do that."
The forecast has temperatures dropping slightly Monday, with a high of 102 degrees. Tuesday's high is 101 degrees, and Wednesday's is 99.
A chance for afternoon showers and thunderstorms returns to the forecast Monday and Tuesday, but the scattered storms will have little impact on the hot weather.
Nationwide, it's also been hot. In the past week, across the United States, 1,011 records have been broken, including 251 new daily high temperature records on Tuesday.
If forecasts hold, more records could fall in the coming days.