Rare weather event drops more than 1.5 inches of rain at Lubbock airport

Rarely seen: Airport deluge, City bone-dry. Our rain outlook and record-heat.

LUBBOCK, Texas (KCBD) - In a situation rarely seen, a thunderstorm remained nearly stationary over the Lubbock airport dumping 1.59″ of rain in the gauge there in a span of 70 minutes. All while all but the far northeastern corner of the City of Lubbock remained bone-dry. Here are some other rain totals, the outlook for more rain, and the looming triple-digit heat.

Last night’s rain, from about 1:30 AM to 3:30 AM, brings Lubbock’s total for August so far up to 1.72″, which is 0.26″ above the month-to-date average. Total precipitation for 2019 so far is 15.17″, which is 2.68″ above the average year-to-date of 12.49″. Last year at this time the total was 5.81″.

Rainfall totals for the 24-hours ending at 7:45 AM Friday, courtesy of the TTU West Texas Mesonet (in inches measured):

1.84 Graham 5SSW

0.84 Fluvanna 3WNW

0.70 Post 1NE

0.60 Northfield 1S

0.47 Gail 2ESE

0.45 Roaring Springs 3N

0.45 Snyder 3SSW

0.41 O'Donnell 1N

0.28 Ralls 1SE

0.23 Muleshoe 2SSW

0.21 Turkey 2WSW

0.21 Snyder 3E

0.17 Morton 1ENE

0.15 Abernathy 5ENE

0.15 Spur 1W

0.11 South Plains 3ENE

0.09 Guthrie 10WSW

0.08 Rotan 5W

0.06 Lake Alan Henry 1NW

0.05 Paducah 10SW

0.05 Wolfforth 6SSW

0.04 Dora NM 2SW

0.03 Memphis 1NE

0.03 Earth 9WSW

0.01 Lamesa 2SE

0.01 Jayton 1SSE

0.01 Caprock Canyons State Park

0.01 Floydada 2NNE

The characters following each community above refer to the rain gauge location in miles and the direction from the community's center - typically the Courthouse or City Hall, sometimes the downtown or business district. "Graham 5SSW " is the station five miles south-southwest of the center of Graham. Rainfall in Graham may have been less or greater.

Once again, thunderstorms appear a little more likely late today. A few isolated storms are are expected from about mid-afternoon through mid-evening. More numerous storms are indicated for late this evening and overnight. Once again, a little better chance of rain at your location. Once again, some of the storms may become marginally severe with damaging wind gusts and hail, locally moderate to heavy rain and frequent lightning.

When thunder roars, go indoors. Even if indoors is a vehicle. It's time to move when you can hear thunder or see lightning bolts. Please keep in mind the wildfire danger remains elevated.

Only a slight chances of rain tomorrow, Saturday, with dry and very hot weather Sunday and Monday.

The rain cooled air dropped Lubbock to 66° this morning, but as I've previously noted temperatures once again will be the main weather story in the days ahead. Highs this afternoon will range from the low 90s northwest to the upper 90s east. Saturday from the mid-90s northwest to near 102° (or so) east. Sunday from the upper 90s northwest to near 107° east. Monday is still expected to be as hot or even hotter.

The potential pattern change still shows up in the medium-range forecast models. Before the change, high pressure will strengthen over West Texas trending us dry and very hot. That will be followed by a cold front late Monday or early Tuesday bringing a significant but brief drop in temperature and a slight chance of rain.

The drop from Monday's highs to Tuesday's highs could be up to twenty degrees. As I noted yesterday, if the front is a little early Monday won't be as hot and Tuesday might be cooler than my current forecast. On the other hand, if the front is a little late Monday may be hotter and Tuesday not quite as cool as my current forecast. Watch for updates!

My forecast highs and the record highs for each date through Tuesday:

Fri, Aug 23: 94°, 101° (1985)

Sat, Aug 24: 97°, 101° (1936 and 1973)

Sun, Aug 25: 104, 105° (1936)

Mon, Aug 26: 105, 102° (1922)

Tue, Aug 27: 88°, 100° (1931 and 2018)

In the Pacific off the coast of Mexico is Tropical Storm Ivo (pronounced eye-VOH). At 10 our time this morning the center (near 18.8N 115.0W) was about 35 miles north-northwest of the small island Isla Clarion and about 425 miles southwest of Cabo San Lucas. Ivo is moving to the north-northwest and is anticipated to move generally north-northwestward or northwest this weekend. This movement varies from storms in the eastern Pacific this season so far, which have moved generally westward or west-northwestward. The current forecast keeps it below a Category 1 hurricane.

At this time, Ivo is not a factor in our South Plains weather nor is it expected to be, other than perhaps some cirrus clouds (high and typically thin). But I'll keep an eye on it.

Lubbock's low yesterday was 67°, one degree above the average for the date. The high was 94°, three degrees above the average for the date. The August 22 record low is 58° (1923, 1945, and 1967) and the record high 100° (1930, 1985, and 1999). For today, August 23, Lubbock’s average low is 66° and the high 91°. The record low is 54° (1923) and the record high 101° (1985).

Today’s sunset in Lubbock is at 8:24 PM CDT. Tomorrow’s sunrise is at 7:16 AM CDT.

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