LA CROSSE, Wisconsin (WXOW)- Excessive heat and possible severe thunderstorms will hit the Coulee Region with a one-two punch this afternoon.
An area of low pressure over western Minnesota will sweep in a warm front during the morning. Behind this front is an air mass that has continually baked the Plains state with triple digit heat all summer. An Excessive Heat Advisory will be in effect from noon until 7 p.m. as the heat index soars to 105 degrees or higher. News 19 Meteorologist Alex Kirchner advises to drink plenty of water and find a cool place to take a break from the excessive heat. The Salvation Army will have its cooling center at 8th Street in La Crosse open from 10 p.m. to 4 p.m. today. Know the signs of heat related illnesses- if you start to feel dizzy, nauseous, and have a rapid heartbeat or breathing, get to a cool location immediately.
The second punch comes late this afternoon into the evening hours. A cold front associated with the low pressure will collide with the hot and humid air ahead of it. Meteorologist Alex Kirchner says this is a great environment for thunderstorms to form, and the air may be unstable enough for explosive development that leads to strong to severe thunderstorms. These storms have the potential to bring damaging wind gusts in excess of 60 mph, in addition to frequent lightning and heavy rain. If a storm warning is issued for your area, head to a safe location indoors and away from windows. Avoid going outdoors until 30 minutes after the last rumble of thunder.
Head to www.wxow.com/weather for updates including information on any warnings issued today. Interactive Stormtracker is a great tool to monitor any afternoon thunderstorms and track those close to your neighborhood.
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