Record-breaking heat will bake California and Nevada today, followed by a chance of a stray, dry thunderstorm, raising new concerns of wildfires.
A shallow layer of marine air will moderate temperatures and cause morning low clouds along the coast through Sunday from San Francisco to Los Angeles and San Diego.
However, temperatures will climb to new highs for the season to date in many areas inland including Sacramento, Reno, Las Vegas, Phoenix and Palm Springs. Many locations can eclipse record highs for the date underneath blazing sunshine.
People are reminded to avoid strenuous activity during the midday and afternoon hours, when temperatures will be the highest and the sun is the most intense.
According to Western Weather Expert Ken Clark, "Winds will generally be light, but low humidity, scorching sunshine and climbing temperatures will result in very dry fuels again."
Because of the highly variable terrain in the region, local breezes can kick up for a brief time, with no notice.
Caution is advised when using gasoline-powered equipment outdoors. Never pull your vehicle over grassy or dry brush areas. Exhaust systems on equipment and vehicles can be hot enough to start a fire.
An added potential trouble-maker will be the movement of a weak storm in the upper atmosphere toward the coast Sunday into Monday. The system was stalled off the coast of Southern California during much of this week.
"Even though this storm will be moisture-starved, it could produce a stray thunderstorm over the mountains of California and Nevada," Clark said.
The thunderstorms would bring little or no rain, but multiple cloud-to-ground lightning strikes, which could ignite new blazes.
The benefit of the weak storm will be to progressively ease the heat in a west-to-east fashion across California and Nevada Sunday through Monday. The Four Corners and southern High Plains will then have to endure the intense sizzle.
Four people in Florida are likely the first in the United States to contract the Zika virus by local mosquitoes, officials said Friday.
Rounds of drenching showers and heavy thunderstorms will heighten the risk of flash flooding across the northeastern United States through the final weekend of July.
Rounds of showers and thunderstorms moving westward off the coast of Africa may pave the way for future tropical systems over the Atlantic Ocean in the weeks ahead.
The Formula One race in Hockenheim, Germany, this weekend could become the third consecutive race to be disrupted by showers and thunderstorms.
Additional downpours are likely to roll across northern New Jersey and could suspend play during the late rounds at the 98th PGA Championship at Baltusrol Golf Club this weekend.
Tropical Depression 06w threatens to bring flooding rain to the Philippines into this weekend with potential future impacts on China and Taiwan.
Columbia, SC (1991)
July 1991 became the wettest month ever with 17.46" of rain. The old record was 16.72" set in August 1949.
Gulf Coast (1995)
Tropical storm Dean entered the Texas coast near Galveston, TX. Galveston reported a wind gust of 51 mph, but just 0.54" of rain. Coastal roads were flooded across Louisiana.
Las Vegas, NV (1998)
2.50 inches of rain in 1 hour.