Showers, Thunderstorms Forecast During the Afternoon Across T&T, Bringing Some Heat Relief.

As of 12:00 PM Sunday 15th September 2019, hot and sunny conditions are ongoing across Trinidad and Tobago with isolated showers ongoing in a few localized areas.

Showers and thunderstorms are likely across both islands through the evening, interrupting partly cloudy skies. Heavier showers and thunderstorms are forecast to favor Trinidad. Street flooding and gusty winds may accompany these heavier or thundery showers.

Lingering showers and the isolated thunderstorm may continue to affect both islands overnight, interrupting partly cloudy and settled skies.

There are NO alerts, watches or warnings in effect for Trinidad and Tobago from the Trinidad and Tobago Meteorological Service at this time.

11:45 AM Sunday 15th September 2019: Isolated showers are affecting parts of Trinidad and Tobago, with additional activity approaching the islands. Image: Trinidad and Tobago Meteorological Service

So where were the showers and thunderstorms that were nearing Trinidad and Tobago this morning? As the cluster of showers approached the islands, it ultimately dissipated, producing a brief period of stable conditions across Trinidad and Tobago which let to mostly clear skies through the mid to late morning.

However, day time heating and ample atmospheric moisture are forecast to trigger and fuel (respectively) showers and thunderstorms across Trinidad and Tobago through the remainder of today.

Tropical Wave 46 moved across the Lesser Antilles last night, bringing showers and thunderstorms across Martinique, Dominica and Guadeloupe, as well as parts of the Leewards. Another active tropical wave is approaching the Lesser Antilles tonight with showers and thunderstorms forecast across much of the region. Credit: Weathernerds
Tropical Wave 46 moved across the Lesser Antilles last night, bringing showers and thunderstorms across Martinique, Dominica and Guadeloupe, as well as parts of the Leewards. Another active tropical wave is approaching the Lesser Antilles tonight with showers and thunderstorms forecast across much of the region. Credit: Weathernerds

Temperatures

Last night’s minimum temperatures were warm at 24°C at Piarco, Trinidad, and 26°C at Crown Point, Tobago. Minimum low temperatures across Trinidad and Tobago tomorrow are forecast to range between 25°C-27°C, with temperatures at the upper end of the minimum low-temperature range favoring Tobago. Low temperatures are likely to be lower across inland and mountainous areas.

Today, maximum high temperatures across T&T are forecast to be near a hot 33°C at Piarco, Trinidad and a heat index ranging from 37°C to dangerous 48°C. Across Tobago, maximum high temperatures are forecast to be a warm 32°C with a heat index of 36-39°C. The heat index is an index that combines air temperature and relative humidity, generating a “feel’s like” temperature.

The Heat Index

The heat index is a combination of air temperature and relative humidity determining what the air feels like to a person i.e. how hot it actually feels.

The heat index is important because of sweating. Your body sweats in order to cool the skin and maintain a constant, healthy body temperature. This cooling process means that the sweat has to evaporate off the skin to remove heat. However, if the sweat is unable to evaporate, the body isn’t able to regulate temperature.

With high volumes of moisture in the air, also known as high relative humidity, which T&T regularly experience due to its tropical climate, the rate of sweat evaporation decreased. This is because the atmosphere is unable, or has limited potential to hold additional moisture in the atmosphere.

This results in you feeling warmer in humid conditions and cooler in less humid conditions i.e. when relative humidity decreases. As temperature increases, the heat index increases. As relative humidity increases, so does the heat index.

 Heat Index Values Explained
Heat Index Values Explained

The heat index is generally classified into four categories: caution, extreme caution, dangerous and extremely dangerous. Generally across Trinidad and Tobago, we experience heat indices of caution to extreme caution in times of hot days, with isolated areas experiencing dangerous heat indices such as urban areas.

Today, heat index levels are likely to remain at extreme cautious to dangerous levels. Heat cramps and heat exhaustion are likely with heatstroke probable with continued activity.

Heat Safety

Graphic: Beat the Heat. Heat related deaths are preventable.

Graphic: Beat the Heat. Heat related deaths are preventable.

Source: MEMA
Heat Safety Tips and Resources
Heat Safety Graphic. Source: Heat Safety Tips and Resources

Seas

Seas are forecast to be moderate with waves up to 1.5 meters in open waters and near calm in sheltered areas.

Over the Next 24 Hours

Weather: Tropical Wave 46 moved across the Lesser Antilles overnight, with Tropical Wave 47 forecast to move across the region on Monday. Much of the active weather is forecast to move across the Northern half of the Lesser Antilles, bringing scattered to widespread showers and thunderstorms to that region.

Across the Southern Windwards, isolated to scattered showers are possible due to an increase in atmospheric moisture and a favorable environment for convective activity.

Showers and thunderstorms are likely across both islands through the evening, interrupting partly cloudy skies. Heavier showers and thunderstorms are forecast to favor Trinidad. Street flooding and gusty winds may accompany these heavier or thundery showers.

Lingering showers and the isolated thunderstorm may continue to affect both islands overnight, interrupting partly cloudy and settled skies.

Similar conditions are forecast on Monday, after an initially settled and hot morning, showers are forecast to return.

Winds: Sustained surface winds between 15 KM/H and 30 KM/H with gusts in excess of 50 KM/H are possible in heavy showers or thunderstorms across Trinidad and Tobago.

With wind gusts in excess of 50 KM/H, whole trees are expected to be in motion and there may be some inconvenience when walking against the wind gusts. Light outdoor objects may topple or become airborne such as garbage cans, potted plants, loose galvanize or construction material and other outdoor furniture. Tents may jump. Older/weaker trees may fall, bringing down utility poles and lines.

High Wind Event Precautions
High Wind Event Precautions

Rainfall: Generally, 5-15 millimeters of rainfall is forecast, with these higher totals favoring Eastern Trinidad and Tobago. Localized downpours in heavier showers and thunderstorms may produce accumulations up to and in excess of 25 millimeters.

Generally, with heavy showers and thunderstorm activity, street flooding, particularly in flood-prone areas or areas with poor drainage, is possible as well as flash flooding in areas where more prolonged heavy rainfall may occur.

Frequent Lightning: In addition, with forecast thunderstorms, frequent lightning is likely.

Why I May Not/Will Not See Constant Rainfall?

A frequent complaint is the forecast is wrong because I didn’t experience any rainfall. Scattered showers mean that you, individually, may experience some showers intermittently throughout the day and there is a higher chance for this activity than isolated activity.

Today, isolated to scattered activity is forecast.

Forecast - Isolated, Scattered, Widespread - What do they mean?
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