ROANOKE, Va. – Wednesday brings another round of 90° heat to the region, which brings up a milestone for the Roanoke Valley. This will mark 22 straight days of 90° heat, which ties the record for longest heat wave set back in 1966. The New River Valley has only hit 90° three times this year, whereas Danville and Lynchburg have been hitting it with a fair amount of regularity recently too.
Prior to any storms Wednesday, we’ll go through the all-too-familiar trend of high heat and humidity. It will feel like we’re near the triple digits in places like Roanoke, Bedford, Lexington, Botetourt, Smith Mountain Lake, Rocky Mount, Martinsville, Lynchburg and Southside.
Once any storms come in, however, they’ll have some umph with them. Like we saw yesterday, any storms start out hit-or-miss in nature and will throw out a lot of lightning. This could start as soon as 12-2 p.m. in parts of the New River Valley, Roanoke Valley and/or Highlands.
As we head deeper into the afternoon and early evening hours, more storms will fire up especially north of U.S. 460.
Anything that forms Wednesday could turn strong-to-severe. The main threats would be localized wind damage, localized flooding and small hail.
By Thursday, a front will be closer to the region. That, combined with our heat and humidity, will set off another round of showers and storms. Once again, any of these could turn strong-to-severe.
If there is any time in the near future that could snap the 90° streak in Roanoke, it would be Thursday or Friday. It all depends on cloud cover and exactly when storms decide to pop.
By the weekend, high pressure to our west will result in hotter air building up.
We’ll get back into the low to mid 90s across much of the area by then with limited storm chances.