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Morning Express with Robin Meade

A fast, personal, and smart blend of all the news you want in the morning. We call it "News in the Fast Lane." So buckle up.

 A man sun bathes in Washington Square Park on July 15, 2013 in New York City. Temperatures are expected to reach well into the 100s this week, as a heat wave descends on the New York City region.

Heatwave stifles East Coast

It is so hot on the East Coast, places like New York could set a record for power usage today.

Everybody is cranking up the A/C, because of scorching temps.

October heat hitting the west

Eat lightly before you hop onto an airplane headed East today, It’ll be a two-bagger this afternoon with all the turbulence. The two storms that where over the MW and E over the past few days are currently merging their energy over the NE and Great Lakes region, dragging rain and wind along for the ride. Currently the rain is heavy over VA and PA, with pockets around the rest of OH, NY, NJ, and New England. The wind will increase out of the West for the area this afternoon with gusts to 35 mph in Chicago. A high wind watch is up for Western NY for tonight and Tomorrow. I’ll have the maps for you.

Dry air is settling back to the rest of the country, and that means another warm day out West. I’m thinking 100 will do it for Phoenix today, and upper 80s in LA. This is the last day of the real hot Oct. air for a while, but even San Francisco will hit 80. Those are the major weather headlines, a big E storm and heat out West!

Remnants of Lee should keep Katia offshore

What a morning with something for everybody weather wise. Tornado warnings have been posted for VA and NC this morning with a watch down to SC until 2 pm. I’ll have the warning areas. This stuff is all from the remnants of tropical storm Lee as it gets pulled northward along a cold front. The huge amounts of rain we saw fall on LA and MS is now edging through the Appalachian Mountains to the NE with flood watches and warnings all around. I’m thinking around 5-6” or rain in the mountains. I’ll have those for you too.

That cold front is actually a blessing for the NE, since it will effectively shunt hurricane Katia away from the US/Canadian coast and into the northern Atlantic over the next 5 days. Rip currents and rough surf is the only noticeable product of the storm we’ll see.

Katia strengthens along an uncertain path

I’m tracking Tropical Storm Katia again this morning, as she has gained some power. Max sustained winds are creeping toward hurricane strength (above 74 mph) at 65 mph, and that trend unfortunately will continue as it rolls over warmer water and light wind shear. The direction hasn’t changed yet, still moving at a quick 21 mph to the WNW. There will be no landfall for anybody (including the Leeward Islands) for at least the next five days. As Katia moves closer to North America, the steering will start to be influenced by whatever high pressure or trough is over the region next week. It’s still too early to tell exactly what the US weather will be in seven days, so the track can’t be nailed down beyond five days at this point.

There’s also an interesting cluster of storms over the Southern Gulf/Western Caribbean this morning that may affect the US weather this weekend. The NHC is giving it only a 10% chance of turning into a tropical depression, but a few computer models develop it into a big storm that could affect LA/TX. This could mean beneficial rain for the weekend, but could mean damaging winds as well. That’s all speculative anyway since the thing hasn’t even formed yet. I’ll tweet what happens with this thing.

Baseball sized hail nails Nebraska and temps to 110 in Texas

What the hail? Huge, baseball-sized hail. That’s the video I have to share with you from Omaha NE yesterday as the MW and Plains got hammered with the late-summer storms. There is more of that action shotgunned around the US this morning, mainly across the Eastern half of the nation. I’ll show you the regional radars on the show, but there are all kinds of impulses shooting around the atmosphere right now. Each one will generate some storm action below it this afternoon, I’ll have it for you.

The heat is back in the same spots from TX to KS over to AR, LA, and MS. The heat index will rise to around 110F today.

Record highs in Louisiana and Texas

Record highs from the 1800s were broken yesterday in LA and TX, and like Kate Gosselin’s personal assistant, you’ll get no break today. The high pressure region is growing a little bigger and stretching West and North to include more regions under heat advisories. Temperatures will be over 100F in the same spots, and the humidity will jack that heat index to around 110F. I’ll show you the areas, but it now includes spots in KS too. Heck even Denver hits 98 today.

Storms are producing heavy rain in the Philly area this morning, and that will blossom into NYC today as well. Round one will end for them later this morning, but round two will develop later this afternoon. The end result will be heavy rain over already drenched spots in the NE and air travel delays in the NYC/Philly area. I’ll have the updates on the show.

July 2011 – 4th hottest July ever!

We are halfway through August and the EXTREME HEAT continues. If you are thinking this summer seems even hotter than many summers past, you may be on to something. There is evidence to back that feeling up. July 2011, according to NOAA was the fourth hottest July ever on record. Here are some of the highlights of scorching summer:

Oklahoma and Texas had their warmest months ever on record, with average temperatures of 88.9 degrees F and 87.1 degrees F, respectively.
• Oklahoma's statewide average temperature was the warmest monthly statewide average temperature on record for any state during any month.
41 of the lower 48 states had above-normal, much-above-normal, or a record warmest July.
• The South climate region - Arkansas, Kansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Oklahoma, and Texas - had its warmest single calendar month for any climate region on record.
Dallas exceeded 100 degrees F on 30 of the 31 days in July.
• Washington, D.C.’s Reagan National Airport had its warmest single calendar month on record, with an average temperature of 84.5 degrees F, breaking the previous record of 83.1 degrees F set in July 2010 and July 1993.

Emily is dead but the heat lives on

TS Emily is dead, or at least on life support. It appears the combo of Hispaniola mountains and wind shear did her in (see previous blog). The remnants are still producing showers for Haiti/DR and it still may regenerate into a storm. The NHC gives it a 60% chance of turning back into a tropical depression, and if it gains some strength after that it will be called Emily (again). All model guidance takes it off the SE coast.

Heat is back in the same spots, the S, Mid South, and SW. I’ll show you the warned areas for heat plus a glimpse at some of the high temperatures for the day. Areas in purple (above) are under "excessive heat warnings" today. Cooler air WILL drop out of Canada next week, but I still don’t think it will reach past OK/KS border. Fingers crossed, but I’ll check it again on Monday.

Tropical storm Emily changes course (a little), plus big heat in Little Rock

My commute to HLN this morning was wild. The flashing lightning was non-stop, making my windshield look like the red carpet at the Oscars. Or at least the Daytime Emmy Awards

Tropical storm Emily has finally nudged to the north a little. The patch takes it over Haiti today, and if it holds together over the Mountains (see previous blogs) it will emerge into warmer water and lighter wind shear near the Bahamas. This will make her gain some strength, and it will get close to FL Atlantic coast over the weekend. Check out the track above. The Westerlies should move the storm into the Atlantic, away from the Carolinas on Monday. We’ll see how close she gets.

Tiger Woods is back – Plus, lockout schmockout, get your basketball from the lingerie league

Tiger Woods is finally talking about his break-up! Not his divorce from Elin. His split from his caddie! Tiger will tee off tomorrow without Steve Williams on his bag. He gave Williams the boot last month (above: Tiger Woods with friend Bryon Bell, who will caddie for him at this week's Bridgestone Invitational tournament in Ohio). Yesterday, Tiger talked publicly for the first time about the break-up with his long-time caddie, saying it was just time for a change. Tiger hasn't finished a tournament since the masters in April when he re-injured his left leg. He says that's fully healed. For more on Tiger's return visit SI.com.

A pro tennis player showed up in Carlsbad, New Mexico for her tournament this week. Too bad the tournament was in Carlsbad, California!! How does this happen?! 19 year-old Bojana Jovanovski needs a new travel agent. She flew from Washington, DC... to Dallas... to Albuquerque... to Carlsbad, New Mexico. After she landed, her driver couldn't find her and called asking, "are you in Carlsbad, California or Carlsbad, New Mexico?" Jovanovski, who's the 53 ranked player in the world, had to spend the night in the airport. The next morning, she flew to San Diego, finally arriving in the right Carlsbad just 30 minutes before her match, which she lost in 3 sets. Next up, Jovanovski plays in Toronto... which is in Canada.

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