After weeks of sizzling summer temperatures, Central Texas is getting a reprieve, with a weeklong forecast of rainstorms and temperatures in the 80s, National Weather Service meteorologists said.
Heat advisories and high heat indexes spread across Central Texas last week, with high temperatures reaching 104 degrees or higher. After a warm weekend, a summertime front and a tropical air mass circulating into Louisiana caused Central Texas to receive a forecast of showers and thunderstorms for the rest of the week, Fort Worth-based National Weather Service meteorologist Dennis Cain said.
“It is a combination of those things that brought a low-pressure system over Louisiana that brought the low-level moisture, then there is a front that is sitting over us that is producing the rain,” Cain said. “It is basically North and Central Texas that will be experiencing rain through at least Friday with temperatures in the mid-80s.”
By late Monday afternoon, Waco Regional Airport had accumulated 1.1 inches of rain, and rain showers continued. Cain said the Aug. 15 precipitation record was easily surpassed Monday.
“The total was actually very easy to break, because the rainfall record on Aug. 15 was previously 0.69 inches in 1922,” Cain said. “Obviously, the Waco area is going to be well beyond that total, since rain is still coming.”
For the year, Waco has received 28.75 inches of rain, Cain said. This year’s total is 7.75 inches above normal rainfall totals to this point in a typical year.
“Summertime temperatures are usually in the upper 90s for the first half of the month, and it typically drops to the mid-90s by the end of the month,” Cain said. “Usually in the summer, when you get a front, it is a one-and-done type of event, but this pattern is one that is keeping the front hanging over the area and keeping our temperatures below normal.”
Waco police Sgt. W. Patrick Swanton said officers worked a few morning to late-afternoon accidents, reportedly because of wet weather, but no serious injuries were reported.
No severe threat of thunderstorms was noted for the rest of this week, Cain said.
The chance of precipitation continued to decrease throughout the rest of the week to a 30 percent chance of storms and showers Friday before a chance of showers and thunderstorms reaches 50 percent Saturday with high temperatures reaching 88 degrees.
“We are just going to be in this steady rain pattern for the next several days, although there may be more showers that are hit-or-miss for a few days,” Cain said. “This pattern isn’t really going anywhere right now, so as new precipitation develops, we are just going to keep getting some rain showers.”