FIRST ALERT FORECAST: Drier weather expected through weekend, next week

BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - Wednesday was considerably quieter on Doppler radar compared to previous days, and that may be a good omen. Our forecast for the coming days calls for a drier weather pattern for the WAFB region, especially by the end of the weekend. Set the rain forecast with a 40 percent coverage around the WAFB area for Thursday and Friday, with those percentages running at 30 to 40 percent on Saturday. Not surprisingly, most of the activity for the next three days will occur during the afternoons. Look for morning starts in the low 70s with afternoon highs running in the low 90s each day through the weekend.

Yet the news gets even better for Sunday, with rain chances currently set at just 20 percent for the WAFB area. What’s more, we keep rain chances posted at 20 to 30 percent for all of next week too. Remember, that means someone will get some rain almost every day, but the coverage will be rather limited, especially when we compare it with what we have been dealing with for most of the last few weeks. With those lower daily rain percentages however, expect afternoon highs to get up around 90° or so each day.

The big weather focus in the WAFB Storm Center remains directed on the tropics. We start with the addition of another named storm: Sub-Tropical Storm Joyce has developed in the north-central Atlantic, as the tenth named storm of the season. Fortunately, Joyce is of no concern for mainland areas. Meanwhile, Florence has dipped to Category 3 intensity as of Wednesday afternoon, but still continues to pose a catastrophic threat to the coasts of both Carolina states. The ominous outlook is further complicated by recent forecast models hinting that Florence could sag southwestward along the coastline, effectively delivering hurricane force winds to South Carolina after slamming North Carolina.

Isaac is still expected to roll into the Caribbean, and the latest forecast now hints that the previous demise of Isaac in the west-central Caribbean may have been premature. Unfortunately, forecast confidence for Isaac beyond about three days is on the low end, both in terms of intensity and late track direction. We do not need to get too concerned about Isaac right now, but this system will need some re-assessment into the weekend.

That leaves Invest 95L in the southwestern Gulf. Virtually all of our computer guidance takes the system into the lower half of the Texas coast. While Louisiana could get a rain band or two out of the system, impacts for the Bayou State look to be minimal, even if it does achieve tropical depression or low-end tropical storm strength.

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