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Friday Forecast: Severe thunderstorms, cooler temperatures and smoky skies

Published: Jul. 29, 2021 at 1:29 PM CDT|Updated: Jul. 30, 2021 at 12:32 PM CDT
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LINCOLN, Neb. (KOLN) - There is quite a bit to unpack out of the forecast for the next several days but the good news is that we have only one more hot and humid day to get through before we see some relief from the heat and humidity! Heat Advisories have been posted for south central and southeastern Nebraska from 12 PM to 9 PM on Friday as heat index values could reach to between 100° and 105° at times. If you can, try and limit your time outside on Friday afternoon and make sure you drink plenty of water if you do have to be out!

Heat Advisories are in place for south central and southeastern Nebraska from 12 PM to 9 PM on...
Heat Advisories are in place for south central and southeastern Nebraska from 12 PM to 9 PM on Friday.(KOLN)

That front is forecast to essentially stall out across the area as we head into the day on Friday and will again serve as the focus for some additional thunderstorms into Friday evening when an upper level disturbance pushes out of Wyoming and combines with the front. The going forecast for now would have a cluster of storms developing in the afternoon and pushing southeast across parts of northern and eastern Nebraska with large hail, damaging winds, and locally heavy rain as the primary threat. The SPC has posted a marginal and slight risk across much of central and eastern Nebraska for the day on Friday and it’s these areas that will see the best chance for those storms. While it’s hard to pin down exactly where, someone inside these areas will likely see some heavy rain with 1″ to 2″ or more of rainfall possible with that cluster of storms.

Severe weather is possible late Friday afternoon and Friday night. Large hail and damaging...
Severe weather is possible late Friday afternoon and Friday night. Large hail and damaging winds will be the main threat, however, a few isolated tornadoes cannot be ruled out.(1011 Weather)

Behind the front, we also have light north and northeasterly winds and that is expected to help push some thick wildfire smoke into the area as we head overnight and into the day on Friday. Currently a very thick plume of smoke has been drifting across the eastern Dakotas and into parts of Minnesota and that plume of smoke is forecast to impact Nebraska into the day on Friday and could lead to reduced visibility and reduced air quality. Unlike the past several weeks when we’ve seen more mid and high level smoke across the area, this plume will be much closer to the surface and could impact folks who are sensitive to particulates in the atmosphere.

A plume of near-surface smoke is forecast to impact the state into the day on Friday and could...
A plume of near-surface smoke is forecast to impact the state into the day on Friday and could lead to areas of reduced visibility and reduced air quality.(KOLN)
A front settling into the area on Friday will give us a wide range of temperatures by Friday...
A front settling into the area on Friday will give us a wide range of temperatures by Friday afternoon.(KOLN)

The extended forecast offers us much more comfortable conditions compared to the last week when our weather has been dominated by hot and very humid conditions. Look for highs mainly in the mid 80s as we head through the weekend and into next week. Our best chances for rain will come Friday evening and into Saturday morning with the aforementioned cluster of thunderstorms moving across the state. Into next week we’ll hold to some small chances for rain through the first several days of August.

A pattern change will lead to some cooler weather over the course of the next week with highs...
A pattern change will lead to some cooler weather over the course of the next week with highs mainly in the 80s.(KOLN)

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