COLUMBIA SC — Welcome to summer in South Carolina, where afternoon heat approaching 100 will be broken by potentially severe thunderstorms.
The National Weather Service has issued a heat advisory for much of the coastal plain – where temperatures today are expected to hit the upper 90s with heat index values near 110 in the late afternoon. The Midlands and Upstate will be only slightly cooler.
The heat will end as a cold front crosses the state. The cold air hitting hot air is expected to trigger thunderstorms starting around 3 p.m. in the Upstate and slowly moving across the state. Arrival in the Midlands could coincide with rush hour.
Strong winds and heavy rains in spots are possible, but tornadoes are less likely, according to the federal Storm Prediction Center.
The National Weather Service also has posted a flood warning for the section of the Congaree River near Congaree National Park. Recent rains moving downstream have pushed the river to minor flood levels at the park for the second time in two months. At the expected level, some sections of the dirt hiking trails might be muddy. It is a flood plain forest, after all.