Hot and humid, with stormy weather on the way

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Here come those thunderstorms. Tuesday started hot and humid, but by late morning a line of storms was already rumbling across Western Massachusetts, heading east. Forecasters warned they could cause trouble.

The National Weather Service said some of the storms could produce gusty winds, frequent lightning, and heavy rain that could cause flash flooding. Communities northwest of the Boston-Providence corridor are expected to be hit the hardest. There’s even a possibility of an isolated tornado along the Route 2 corridor in northern Massachusetts, the weather service said.

“The potential exists for damaging winds, in excess of 60 [miles per hour], with the strongest storms,” the weather service said. “Torrential downpours and frequent, dangerous cloud-to-ground lightning will also accompany the storms. A few storms may also produce large hail, but the greatest threat is expected to be damaging wind.”

By late morning, National Weather Service radar showed a line of thunderstorms entering the northwestern corner of the state.

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“The line is forecast to weaken as it approaches the Boston to Providence corridor late in the afternoon or in the early evening,” the weather service said.


The weather service issued a flash flood watch for most of Massachusetts, including the Boston and Providence corridor, from noon to 10 p.m. Tuesday. Forecasters tweeted that 1 to 2 inches of rain is expected to fall in a short period of time, and some places could see 2 to 4 inches, with rainfall rates around 2 inches per hour. “This could lead to localized flash flooding, esp. in urban areas,” forecasters tweeted.

The weather service’s Storm Prediction Center issued a severe thunderstorm watch for Massachusetts and areas in other New England states, effective until 7 p.m.

“Within a very moist and increasingly unstable environment, bands of storms will continue to intensify from late morning into afternoon and generally spread east/northeastward across the region. The stronger storms will be capable of wind damage, although some hail or even a brief tornado cannot be ruled out,” the center said.

The center advised people to be “on the lookout for threatening weather conditions. … Severe thunderstorms can and occasionally do produce tornadoes.”

Forecasters said the skies should begin to clear up by early Wednesday morning, but some showers could linger in southeastern Massachusetts, and areas of fog will be possible. And the change in conditions include a decrease in humidity, forecasters wrote.

“Dry weather is anticipated the rest of the work week along with much lower humidity including warm afternoons and cool nights,” forecasters wrote.

Plenty of sunshine is on tap for Wednesday and Thursday, with highs near 80, and at night temperatures will dip to the 60s. Friday and Saturday will also be sunny and warm, with highs in the 80s, and then wet weather could make a return on Sunday. Forecasters said there’s a 30 percent chance of showers on Sunday, and thunderstorms are possible Sunday night.

Emily Sweeney can be reached at esweeney@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter @emilysweeney.

2018-07-17 16:22:49

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