From the ABC 7 Weather team

Weather in Va., Md., D.C.: Umbrella-ripping storms possible

August 3, 2011 - 04:29 AM
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Trying to read a newspaper in the park today? Fuhgeddaboudit! D.C. has a chance for rain and huge winds on Wednesday.

The D.C. region has a slight chance of severe storms Wednesday, Aug. 3, with the concern being damaging winds. Map from NOAA's Storm Prediction Center (those lines are highways).

Read about those baseball-sized hellstones that rocked Long Island on Monday? Well, today the D.C. region faces down its own risk of severe weather with winds more pushy than an iron-pincered TSA screener. Should you pack a baseball bat (for the hail, not the TSA agent)?

Actually, damaging wind gusts are the chief threat, with perhaps even a few tornadoes in the mix, although the odds for that are still low. A wave in the atmosphere is traveling down from the Great Lakes like a ripple through the water from a shark. When it gets here, there will (probably) be storms. How strong they are depends a lot on how much the sun can pierce through the cloud cover during the early parts of the day. If it gets nice and steamy here, the potential for severe weather shoots up.

Right now there's about a 15 percent chance of powerful thunderstorms. The timing is set for the afternoon, but check the ABC7 forecast and radar for the freshest intel.

So if we're going to get storms today, at least that'll bring a reprieve from the heat, right? As if. The air isn't likely to get cooler than the upper 80s before the wave gets here, and might even touch the low 90s if the sun sticks around. And then high pressure jumps back into the gap left by the departing low-pressure system. The humidity levels will be knocked down a peg, however, so thank heaven for small mercies.

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