Metro Detroit weather: Spectacular weekend ahead!

How long will it last? (Hint: a long time)

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DETROIT – Get ready for one of the nicest weekends we’ll have all spring!

Light wind, low humidity, and comfortable high temperatures will make it picture perfect for whatever outdoor plans you have.

Clear skies will continue tonight, with lows near 40° (that’s 5° Celsius for you awesome Canadians across the river). Very light east wind.

Sunny once again on Saturday, with highs in the upper 60s to near 70° (21° Celsius) but, once again, it’ll be a bit cooler on the eastside due to that east wind coming off the colder lakes.  Saturday’s sunrise is at 6:50 a.m., and Saturday’s sunset is at 8:16 p.m.

Clear Saturday night, with lows in the mid 40s (7° Celsius).

Mostly sunny on Sunday, with highs in the low 70s (22° Celsius), but a little cooler on the eastside.

Mostly clear Sunday night, with lows in the upper 40s (9° Celsius).

Partly cloudy on Monday, with highs in the low 70s (22° Celsius). Today’s computer models are still waffling back and forth with the timing of the approaching cold front, but the models have come into agreement with the front coming through our area dry. One interesting aspect to Monday’s forecast is the temperature profile across our area if the front lays across southeast Michigan during the afternoon -- areas north of the front could be quite a bit cooler.

At this point, we remain dry and mild right through Thursday.  The models try to give us a shower chance on Friday -- we’ll see.  And I took a look at the long range models this afternoon, and I see no regression back to the unusual cold we had the first couple of weeks of the month -- it appears that we’ll keep the mild temperatures through the end of the month!

Michigan Severe Weather Awareness Week

Yesterday I promised you my favorite severe weather safety tips as we wrap up Severe Weather Awareness Week:

First, most people don’t realize that flash floods kill more people every year in the United States than either tornadoes or hurricanes. If you are driving and encountered a flooded road ahead, you don’t know if the road beneath the water has been compromised. Don’t drive into flooded areas. “Turn Around, Don’t Drown” is a well-used National Weather Service slogan, and I can’t think of a more appropriate one.

Second, if a storm is approaching and you hear thunder -- no matter how distant is sounds -- then lightning is close enough to strike you. The moment that first rumble occurs, get inside. I’ve seen what happens to people who are struck by lightning and, even if you survive, the injuries frequently are significant and life altering.  The rule of thumb for returning outside is to wait until thirty minutes after you see or hear the last lightning or thunder.

Finally, here’s my all-time favorite severe weather safety tip, and this has nothing to do with tornadoes:  if you decide to ignore my second tip above and insist on waiting until the last minute to head inside (a really bad idea, but that’s your choice), DON’T WAIT UNTIL THE RAIN BEGINS BEFORE YOU TAKE COVER.  The strongest wind gusts associated with typical severe thunderstorms rush out ahead of the storm -- and usually way out ahead of the rain by several minutes.  If you are waiting for those first raindrops to head in -- and yes, you’ve done it -- you could be outside when severe wind suddenly begins and trees and branches start coming down all around you.  Get inside well before the storm arrives -- not the rain.

All this week I’ve tried to impress upon you the severe weather threat here, and offer some basic safety tips to help keep you safe.  This isn’t rocket science, folks.  Just remember the few basic things I’ve shared with you today and yesterday, and you’ll significantly minimize your risk when severe weather approaches.

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