NEW YORK — Sunday was the eighth day of the season that temperatures soared to 90 degrees or higher and we are well on our way to the first heat wave of the summer.
What is a heat wave?
A heat wave occurs when a high pressure system enters a region and stalls. Most recently, this was observed as the high across the south and central part of the United States remained entrenched, allowing a clockwise motion of air to pump in hot, humid conditions throughout our region. The ridge forces warm air downward, which keeps cool air from rising into the atmosphere.
Keep in mind that the definition of a heat wave varies from region to region. Readings must be above the historical norms. Here in the New York Metro area, three or more consecutive days of temperatures in the 90s would be considered a heat wave.
What to expect in the coming days
With the mercury rising to the low to mid 90s across the city Sunday afternoon, lows will likely bottom out around 80 overnight. It felt more like almost 100 degrees during the day. If you think that’s hot, Monday will be even hotter with “feel like” temperatures close to 110.
A weak cold front could spark afternoon showers or storms in the afternoon. However, high pressure will return on Tuesday along with the hot weather. Even though highs are expected to reach the 90s, it won't feel as humid. Therefore a heat advisory and excessive heat warning are not likely at this time.
You can expect a brief break from the dangerous heat on Wednesday, ending the heat wave. However, the humidity is slated to return. Based on recent models, highs could bounce back into the low 90s on Thursday. Showers and storms are also possible both days.
Finally, sunshine is expected to return and finish out the week. Temperatures will remain a few degrees above normal.
How to stay safe during the heat wave
A heat advisory is in effect until 8 p.m. Monday for the NY Metro area, and an excessive heat warning stays in effect for most of New Jersey. Limit outdoor activities and stay hydrated. Also, don't forget to check on kids, seniors and pets. As always, stay tuned for updates.