NEW ORLEANS (WGNO) — A typical summertime weather pattern is expected over the next couple of days with warm temperatures and occasional afternoon storms.

Even warmer weather is expected Thursday and Friday with high temperatures a few degrees higher. Our heat index values should also increase slightly, moving into the upper 100s. This will put us close to Heat Advisory criteria, which is a heat index of 108 or higher.

Even warmer weather is expected Thursday with high temperatures a few degrees warmer, but our heat index values should stay in the low 100s. This will keep us just below the criteria for a Heat Advisory, which is a heat index of 108 or higher.

Mostly sunny skies are likely with low rain chances at just 20 to 30 percent in the afternoon. Rain chances may increase just slightly on Friday as a weak front approaches the area, but widespread heavy rain is not expected for the next week.

A statewide burn ban is in effect as extreme drought conditions continue to across most of Louisiana. Before today, New Orleans was experiencing a rainfall deficit of near 2 feet year-to-date. We’ll be able to see how this week’s precipitation has impacted the drought on Thursday with the weekly update to the U.S. Drought Monitor.

In the tropics, the National Hurricane Center is tracking newly formed Tropical Storm Lee in the Atlantic. Lee is forecast to become a major hurricane, possibly a Category 4 or 5, as it moves north of the Caribbean over the next week. Most models show the storm moving between Bermuda and the U.S. Atlantic Coast, but it is still a little too early to know if it will make landfall or stay over open water. If it were to impact the United States, it is sill 8 to 10 days away, so there is plenty of time to watch how the system evolves.

Behind Lee, the NHC is also watching an area of interest near Africa, which has a high chance of development over the next seven days. Most weather models show this system developing into a tropical depression or tropical storm by the end of the week. The next name on the list is Margot.

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