There’s a Dangerous Downside to Louisiana’s Weekend Cold Front
All across Louisiana this weekend you will hear the unmistakable sound of metal pots clanging against metal spoons. You'll hear the Swhoosh of ignition as a gas burner spews out a blue flame that will go under that metal pot. In that metal pot, there will be sausage, chicken, duck, goose, other various animals, a selection of spices, roux, and love. And we will call it gumbo and we will be grateful for it all.
Or we will take a variety of dead animals and put them over some coals, that works too.
That's our long-winded Louisiana way of saying there's a cold front coming and just about everybody we know is going to be making gumbo because that's what you cook when the weather finally drops below 90 degrees.
And while there is a joyous air of anticipation throughout the state of Louisiana as we are preparing to put a hellish nightmare of summer behind us, there is a hidden danger that we need you to be aware of.
When Will the Cold Front Move Through Louisiana?
A threat of showers and storms associated with the cold front will push into northwestern Louisiana later tonight and early Thursday morning. Those showers and storms will progress to the south and east across the state during the day on Thursday and into Thursday night.
By Friday morning the wind will have shifted from southerly to northerly. These cooler breezes will moderate our temperatures into the middle 80s for Friday but the real cooldown will come Friday night and through the weekend. High temperatures on both Saturday and Sunday will be in the 70s with overnight low temperatures falling into the 50s across much of Louisiana.
Why Are Cooler Temperatures Dangerous in Louisiana?
The temperature is not where the danger from this frontal system enters the picture. It's the humidity or lack of humidity to be more precise that is causing a major concern among Louisiana officials as we approach the weekend.
The cooler northerly breezes will not only lower our temperatures across Louisiana but the humidity will be extremely low for our part of the country. As you can see in the graphic from the National Weather Service below, humidity readings of less than 30% will be common across the area.
You can also see that there will be a significant breeze blowing across the area too. These winds coupled with low humidity and the extreme drought conditions across Louisiana will exacerbate an already very dangerous fire threat for most of the state.
And if you throw in the fact that many parishes have relaxed their enforcement of burn bans this could be an explosive weekend across the state's rural areas in particular. The cooler weather will bring out the campers. And that means campfires. The cooler weather will bring out the tailgaters and that means cook fires. The cooler weather will lead to drinking by the fire pit on Saturday night and that could mean an errantly discarded cigarette butt spurred on by a gusty breeze will ignite a patch of dry grass.
You get the idea.
You see, we normally don't associate colder with dry. We tend to think cold and wet and hot and dry. This weekend Louisiana will be colder and dry and windy too. That's an explosive recipe for a busy weekend for area fire departments. Y'all let's help them out by being responsible around any and all open flames.
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Gallery Credit: Stephanie Crist