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High rain chances for several more days...African Dust arrives Thursday, impacts weather by Friday

Posted at 5:40 PM, Jun 22, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-22 23:28:28-04

Acadiana will stay in a cloudy and wet pattern for several more days before African Dust arrives locally by Thursday impacting our weather and skies Friday into the weekend.

The set-up for our weather over the next couple of days will be similar to what Acadiana experienced Monday with deep tropical moisture moving northward out of the Western Gulf intersecting with upper level disturbances arriving from the northwest to the southwest.

So rain chances will stay high for our Tuesday (80%) and Wednesday (90%) with a good chance of scattered storms in the morning and then possibly another round into the afternoon/evening.

Most activity will be limited to daytime hours, but we can't rule out a few storms at night.

And typical in this pattern, most of us will see less than a half inch or rain or less each day, but there will be some isolated hots spots that see storms containing torrential downpours of several inches, frequent cloud to ground lighting, and localized winds gusts at 40 mph or more in and near heavier storms.

We even wouldn't rule out a few funnel clouds early in the day either...but they rarely reach the ground and cause any any trouble.

Rain chances should begin to decrease by Friday, as by then we'll be under the influence of African Dust, which should serve to suppress our rain chances, but not completely eliminating them into this weekend.

Monday afternoon you could clearly see the dust via satellite in the Caribbean. That dust is projected to arrive in Louisiana Thursday into Friday, and likely stay into the weekend.

What to expect with the dust: Suppressed (but not eliminated) rain chances Friday into the weekend, hazier and grayer skies, dust residue on cars etc, and impacts upon those with sensitive allergies.

There are benefits with the dust including nutrients to promote phytoplankton development in the ocean and nutrients that benefit the jungles from the Amazon northward, temporarily reduced tropical activity, and if we are lucky, nicer sunsets.

The dust nutrients might also be good for Louisiana agriculture but the extent of the impacts and/or benefits are not yet fully understood.

The dust should begin to clear the area early next week and rain chances may increase again commensurately.

See the KATC 10 Day Forecast for the latest.

Finally in the tropics...sort of, in the Central Atlantic, the National Hurricane Center upgraded a low pressure swirl roughly 300 miles southeast of Nantucket to Sub-tropical Depression Four.

This system will be no concern of ours in the Gulf of Mexico as it moves and passes just to the east of Newfoundland later this week.

The system has a small opportunity to become a "storm" later tonight or early tomorrow but it won't have much of a future beyond Tuesday.

If the system gets upgraded to a sub-tropical or tropical storm, the name would be "Dolly"...which is much easier to pronounce than "Cristobal"!

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