10 things to know about New Jersey’s hottest weekend of 2022
Yes, it’s summer. Yes, it’s hot. Yes, it’s wet. You don’t need me to state the obvious. But some days ahead will be better than others. And there are changes and storm chances to be aware of. So let’s take a quick look at what to expect as we dive into what is likely to be the hottest weekend of the summer in New Jersey.
New Jersey will benefit from a weak cold front that passed over the state on Thursday, bringing slightly less humid air. (The dew points have gone from the 70s to the 60s.) You’ll still be sweating on Friday, with blazing sunshine and high temperatures in the low to mid-90s. But at least we don’t necessarily have to talk about the dreaded heat index for a day.
Saturday is very similar to Friday, although maybe a few degrees warmer. Morning lows in the 70s. Afternoon highs firmly in the 90s. Fairly sunny skies. Moderate humidity.
Heat and humidity will once again crescendo to sweltering and crushing levels on Sunday. High temperatures will reach around 95 to 100 degrees for the most part. Some models also show another disgusting surge of humidity, which would easily push the heat index above the 100 degree mark. There will be more cloud cover (mostly cloudy) and a stronger southwesterly breeze (up to 20 mph) on Sunday, compared to Friday and Saturday.
During one of the next three days – Friday, Saturday, Sunday – we could see an isolated shower or thunderstorm developing. The best luck would be just before sunset, as temperatures begin to cool and the atmosphere destabilizes. Indications from the model suggest that North Jersey would be the most likely location for a mini-storm. Another opportunity for a quick popup would be along the sea breeze front, just inland from the shore. But again, just an isolated dip.
When the heat index (“feels like” or “apparent temperature”) approaches 100 degrees or more, the risk of heat-related illness or injury increases dramatically. It is possible that this threshold will be reached in places on Friday or Saturday. It will almost certainly be a widespread event on Sunday and Monday.
As of this writing, most of New Jersey falls under a Heat Notice until 8 p.m. Sunday. It includes the NJ Turnpike corridor, as well as the interior counties of Ocean and Monmouth). I suspect the advisory will be widened again on Sunday as temperatures and humidity rise further.
Down the shore
Ahh, the sea breeze. Our saving grace during sweltering summer times. For an ocean breeze to cool the beaches along the Jersey Shore, the ambient bottom wind must be light enough. Conclusion: Friday and Saturday should be good, with 80s on the beaches. However, Sunday and Monday seem to be toasted well. Either way, the barrier islands are going to be the coolest places in the state (relatively speaking, at least).
Newark Airport (KEWR) is traditionally one of the hottest weather stations in the state, due to the urban heat island effect and a dodgy thermometer. It has already reached exactly 100 degrees twice in a row this week, Wednesday and Thursday. I wouldn’t be surprised to see a few more triple digit temperatures, especially on Sunday. FYI, the record for 100 degree days in a single season was 9, set in 1993. The last time we had more than two 100 degree days in Newark in a season was 4 in 2011.
Ridiculous temporary heat relief is in sight early next week. As a slow moving cold front moves through New Jersey, a period of rain is expected. This will be followed by an intrusion of somewhat cooler and drier air. There is some uncertainty as to the timing of the rain. Some models show showers and thunderstorms starting Monday noon, possibly extending through Tuesday noon. This does not look like the widespread soaking we need to avoid spiraling dryness issues. But I am concerned about localized showers and the potential for severe weather.
Tuesday will be our best chance not hit 90 degrees next week. But that’s only temporary, as the lower 90s return on Wednesday and Thursday. Another front, another cooling and another batch of rain are forecast for the end of next week, Thursday through Friday.
Stay cool, hydrate and have a great weekend!
Dan Zarrow is chief meteorologist for Townsquare Media New Jersey. Follow him on Facebook or Twitter for the latest real-time weather forecasts and updates.
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