Metro Detroit forecast: Hot, humid, stormy

The Detroit News

In an August marked by high temperatures, Thursday should stand out.

The National Weather Service expects a high in the low 90s, though with humidity added, it will feel more like five to nine degrees warmer. The chance of rain is 60 percent.

“It’s going to be pretty muggy,” meteorologist Dave Gurney said.

Friday holds more of the same. Highs also could reach 90, but far from the record 99 reached in 1944. Still, it’s more than 15 degrees above the Aug. 11 average, according to weather service records. The normal high for the month is 81.4 with a normal low of 62.6.

Showers and thunderstorms are likely Friday. Rainfall amounts between a 10th and quarter of an inch are possible, though some spots could see more, Gurney said. “It’ll be highly dependent on where they are.”

Add to that an air quality alert for the counties of St. Clair, Livingston, Oakland, Macomb, Washtenaw, Wayne and Monroe through Thursday.

The weather service said the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality declared Thursday an “action day” for elevated levels of ozone and urges people and businesses to avoid activities that lead to ozone formation, including refueling vehicles, using gas-powered lawn tools and charcoal lighter fluid.

The hot, humid air mass heading into the area might seem uncomfortable, but it’s not so unusual.

A warm ridge of high pressure centered over the central United States can be “pretty persistent all summer and occasionally builds up through the Midwest,” Gurney said.

The mercury climbed to 95 on Wednesday afternoon at Detroit Metro Airport, adding to the season’s tally of hot days.

“Our warmest period is from late June through parts of August, so we’re right on target,” Gurney said.