Summer 2014: Series of storms to attack central US; Mid-Atlantic
AccuWeather reports as summer 2014 takes shape, Mother Nature will show no mercy as the West will sink deeper into drought and severe thunderstorms will ignite from the Plains to the southern mid-Atlantic.
While a typical summer is in store for much of the East, hurricane season looms, threatening areas along the coast. While this year's hurricane season is expected to be below normal, two systems may make landfall in the United States.
Drought to Intensify in the West, Texas
Following the driest year ever recorded for the state of California, the summer season will lock in the drought for the Golden State and cause drought conditions to expand into the Northwest.
With above-normal temperatures and below-normal rainfall expected from Phoenix to Los Angeles and up through Seattle, much of the West will undergo a dry spell this summer.
"The temperatures this summer will be dictated by where it's dry," AccuWeather.com Lead Long-Range Forecaster Paul Pastelok said.
As the drought strengthens across the Southwest, the temperatures in this region will heat up quickly due to dry conditions.
Across the West, temperatures will rise quickly heading into June 21, 2014, with highs reaching into the 90s and 100s in the valleys of California. Even farther north, the mercury will climb above seasonal normals frequently by midsummer.
"We are going to see the 90s and 100s popping up pretty quickly in the valleys and even the 90s showing up in the big cities such as Seattle and Portland as we get into midsummer," Pastelok said.
As dryness increases across the region, wildfires could prove troublesome for the Northwest this summer. As the wildfire risk heightens, minimal rainfall and lack of water will continue to hit the agricultural and livestock industries hard across the region, limiting fruit and nut production in the U.S.
"They are going to go into a very dry period, and that could lead to some big problems as we get into the middle to later parts of the summer," Pastelok said.
While the drought tightens its grip on the West this summer, the West may not be the only region with a major drought.
As June and July heat up across southern Texas and the tropics remain relatively tranquil in the western Gulf of Mexico, rain will consistently bypass the state.
"We could have a drought developing in the lower valley of Texas along the Gulf Coast, southeast Texas and the lower Mississippi Valley," Pastelok said.
Only two years after the state's previous drought battle in 2011, areas from Brownsville up through San Antonio and Dallas will be at risk for another drought situation this year.
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