By Alex Sosnowski, AccuWeather senior meteorologist
May 27,2017, 4:07:42PM,EDT
While it will not rain the entire time in the Northeast this Memorial Day weekend, people with outdoor plans should be prepared to dodge showers and thunderstorms."During the first part of the weekend, dry air in the wake of a departing storm will allow the weather to improve in some areas," according to AccuWeather Chief Meteorologist Elliot Abrams. "However, as the weekend progresses, a second storm will move in and strengthen, which will cause an uptick in areas of rain."
The dry air is winning out over New England, while rain and thunderstorms will persist in the mid-Atlantic to start the holiday weekend.
On Sunday, New England and a part of the mid-Atlantic stand the best chance of rain-free conditions during the day. A southeasterly breeze could generate low clouds in some locations.
"That breeze may hold temperatures near to slightly below normal along the coast," AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Kristina Pydynowski said, "while places from Washington, D.C., and Pittsburgh to Syracuse and Albany, New York, to Burlington, Vermont, warm into the middle to upper 70s."
However, the mild air will be accompanied by showers and thunderstorms from the southern mid-Atlantic to the upper Ohio Valley.
Rain may hold off until the evening in Washington, D.C., and after the Nationals host the San Diego Padres.
On Memorial Day, New England and northeastern New York state are most likely to have rain falling from 25 to 75 percent of the time. Farther south and west, over the balance of the mid-Atlantic and the central Appalachians, while there could be a downpour, it is likely to rain only 25 percent of the time or less.
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While there is a risk of a downpour for ceremonies in Arlington, Virginia, and Washington, D.C., most of Memorial Day will be free of rain.
As Fleet Week continues at New York City, Sunday may be the driest part of the three-day stretch. The morning hours are likely to be the wettest time of Memorial Day.
"Predicting the exact location and time a shower will occur in a pattern like this is like trying to predict mosquito bites," Abrams said. "You know you are going to get them, but knowing where and when is nearly impossible."
There is a risk of locally heavy and gusty thunderstorms along with the showers this weekend. People will need to monitor the sky and weather advisories.
"People may want to keep checking apps on their phone," according to AccuWeather Meteorologist Dean DeVore. "Forecasts are likely to change on a frequent basis in a weather pattern like this."
Remember to move indoors at the first clap of thunder. As storms approach, get off the lake or the beach. Picnic pavilions and golf carts do not offer adequate protection from a lightning strike.
Area lakes, streams and the Atlantic Ocean are still too cold for safe swimming. Surf temperatures along the mid-Atlantic and New England coasts range from the upper 40s F to the middle 60s.
Attempting to swim in waters this cold can immediately lead to cold water shock, followed by much more dangerous and life-threatening conditions, according to the United States Coast Guard.
Symptoms of cold water shock include gasp reflex, hyperventilation, difficulty holding your breath, rapid heart rate and elevated blood pressure. Following these symptoms, muscle cramps, hypothermia, drowning or cardiac arrest can occur.
Hypothermia can occur in any water temperature below 70, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).