MADISON, Wis. - Very warm to hot and humid weather is expected over southern Wisconsin for the Memorial Day weekend. Alert Days are in the forecast from Friday night through Memorial Day. High temperatures will be in the upper 80s to around 90 degrees, and humid conditions will produce late afternoon heat index readings in the middle to the upper 90s.
The overall weather pattern across the Midwest will not change much over the weekend through early next week. Winds will remain relatively light, adding to the oppressiveness of the heat. Because of the change from cool temperatures just a few days ago to summerlike heat and humidity, people who are in poor physical condition, the elderly, infants, very young children, and pets may be affected by the change in the weather.
Those who are affected most by the heat are advised to reduce outdoor strenuous activity as much as possible, avoid alcohol, and try to stay as cool as possible by remaining in the shade, or indoors in air conditioning.
Recent studies have shown that the effects of heat may be cumulative, so while this weekend's weather might not be as extreme as heat waves later in the summer, it is expected to last over several days. With humid conditions keeping low temperatures at night well into the 60s, for those who don't have air conditioning and can't get a break from the heat at night may be more at risk for physical problems during this hot period.
While little rain is expected to provide temporary cooling this weekend, a few thunderstorms may develop from this afternoon through this evening. Because of the instability of the atmosphere, isolated strong to severe thunderstorms may be possible, with high winds, hail, and locally heavy rain as the main threats.
A severe thunderstorm watch is in effect until 8 p.m. for areas west of a Platteville to Lone Rock to Wisconsin Dells line. The thunderstorm threat should end around midnight.
Stay tuned to WISC-TV3, Channel3000.com, and monitor the Channel3000 First Alert Weather and Traffic App for the latest on the forecast.
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