Scorching heat this week across South may challenge weather records

Published 10:13 am Monday, September 9, 2019

By Brandon Buckingham, AccuWeather Meteorologist

Record-challenging heat will continue to make it feel like the middle of summer across much of the southern United States this week.

The scorching heat was enough to set daily record temperatures in places like Jacksonville, Florida, and Charleston, South Carolina, this past Saturday. The record-challenging heat is forecast to expand its grip across much of the South in the coming days as an expansive dome of high pressure settles in over the region.

Normal high temperatures for the second week of September across the South range from the middle 80s to lower 90s.

Places like Atlanta will be feeling the heat with expected high temperatures topping out in the middle to upper 90s through the week. Daily records dating back to the early 1900s will likely be challenged.

The record high on Monday in Atlanta is a scorching 100 degrees Fahrenheit and the forecast will bring them within a few degrees of that. On Thursday, the daily record of 94 degrees F set in 1900 will be challenged as the current forecast calls for highs in the middle 90s.

Atlanta is not the only city that will be challenging record-high temperatures in the coming days. Nashville and New Orleans, as well as Montgomery and Birmingham, Alabama, will all experience record-challenging heat this week.

Adding in other factors like humidity, wind and the amount of sunlight, Accuweather RealFeelĀ® Temperatures will exceed the century mark for much of the South.

On top of the heat, the air mass overhead will also limit the chances for a cooling shower or thunderstorm. Portions of the Deep South and Southeast are in a slight to moderate drought and the upcoming forecast would only suggest these areas will expand in the coming week.

A stagnant air mass overhead will also lead to air quality issues across much of the South, especially in urban areas and locales that do not receive any rainfall. Children and people sensitive to high levels of ozone and pollutants in the air are urged to take caution while heading outdoors.

With football season underway, it is also important for athletes to take necessary precautions to avoid heat-related illnesses. Taking frequent water breaks and avoiding exercise during the peak heating afternoon hours can limit the chance of falling victim to the heat.

“While the sun angle continues to lower in the sky as we approach the autumnal equinox, anyone spending prolonged time outside should remember to remain hydrated and apply sunscreen.” AccuWeather Meteorologist Brett Rathbun stated.