FIRST ALERT FORECAST: Very windy today as afternoon storms approach from the West

Windy and warm start ahead of afternoon storms. Pack a raincoat!

FIRST ALERT FORECAST: Very windy today as afternoon storms approach from the West

LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) - Conditions are already starting to become a bit breezy this morning as warmer air from the Gulf returned overnight thanks to a warm front lifting over the area. Expect temperatures to continue to gradually warm up closer to 70 by sunrise and the breezy conditions will likely keep fog from becoming too dense for the morning commute.

FIRST ALERT FORECAST: Warm and windy ahead of afternoon/evening storms

Winds will be the biggest issue starting this morning, with sustained winds of 15 to 25 mph and gusts at times of over 35 to near 40 mph. This alone could cause some isolated power outages, not to mention stir up quite a bit of the tree pollen that will further worsen those with allergies. Garbage cans by the street could be blown over, and those of you driving high profile vehicles will need to keep both hands on the steering wheel especially on the bridges and overpasses. Small boats will be prone to capsizing as rough waters through the day will make for hazardous boat travel.

Clouds will keep sunshine limited today with some scattered showers and thunderstorms beginning after the noon hour with a very slow moving front beginning to approach east Texas this afternoon and will help send storms closer to our region. I expect the heaviest storms to remain to our west today but start to inch closer to the Sabine River locales during the afternoon and early evening. The severe weather threat is limited over our part of the state, but one or two severe storms can’t be totally ruled out with damaging winds and heavy rain in storms that could lead to some flash flooding the main concern.

Rain and thunderstorm activity should begin to diminish somewhat this evening, but with the stalled front still to our west, occasional showers and warm evening temperatures can be expected along with a continuance of the breezy conditions. Through the start of our Thursday the front will nudge through Southwest Louisiana and send additional rain showers through with no severe weather expected on Thursday. Most of the rain on Thursday will be much lighter than today’s storm threat and should begin to taper off by Thursday evening as colder air slides back in to our part of the state.

Friday and Saturday will bring the return of some sunshine and set the stage for a much improved but also much cooler St. Patrick’s Day weekend with lows in the 40s and highs in the upper 50s to lower 60s both Saturday and Sunday. The best news is that we leave these dreary and cloudy doldrums for several days as sunshine is expected to continue into the early to middle part of next week with an overall cooler pattern lasting for several days as well. We’ll likely continue to see nighttime lows in the 40s each night through the middle of next week with little to no rain.

First Alert Meteorologist Ben Terry

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