5:45 p.m. Update: Shower activity is now sinking south of the area and should continue to do so. Any remaining showers should exit the southern suburbs during the next hour or so, and that should be about it for today’s showers and storms.
3:50 p.m. Update: An initial line of showers and t’storms is heading off to the east/southeast. But a few other lines approaching fom the west are now into eastern Loudoun and northern Fauquier counites, and will move through the area during the next couple hours unless they fall apart. Currently no severe warnings are out for the approaching storms, but some are producing frequent lightning, gusty winds and possibly small hail along with heavy rain.
From 3 p.m.: Scattered thunderstorms, some with small hail and gusty winds, are rapidly progressing through the area. These storms are not packing too hard a punch, but they may cause briefly heavy rain as well as dangerous lightning. Despite the warmth, with temperatures rising near and past 70 across the area, moisture is fairly limited at the surface and that should help keep most or all storms below severe criteria as they race through.
Through Tonight: After any remaining showers and storms depart rather early (by 5 or 6 p.m. to the south and east), we should trend back toward mostly clear skies. Winds stay up through the night, blowing around 10-15 mph with higher gusts, from the north and northwest. Lows reach the upper 40s to lower 50s.
Tomorrow (Thursday): It might look nicer out the window than it is outside, but it’s going to be pretty nice either way. Winds are rather stiff from the northwest, up around 15-20 mph with gusts near or past 30 mph. Highs should at least near 60 across the area, and may rise into the low 60s.
Chesapeake Bay: A new report from the Chesapeake Bay Program says underwater grasses have dropped to their lowest levels since 2006. They say the decline in recent years, down 21 percent last year alone, is due to unusually hot weather as well as heavy rains of recent. Read more about the report.
Pollen update: Trees are HIGH at 568 spores/cubic meter; up from 429 on Tuesday.