GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — Hot and very humid conditions will build in on Saturday, setting the stage for hazardous conditions to develop across our area, including heat difficulties, large waves at Lake Michigan and chances of strong to severe storms during the afternoon and early evening.
Humidity levels will significantly be on the increase, creating a tropical-feeling air mass this weekend, which might draw people to Lake Michigan beaches to cool off.
If you head to the lakeshore, keep an eye on the flags at the beaches, as hazardous swimming conditions are expected. Waves will build late Friday into Saturday morning, and Saturday will feature large waves and strong currents. A small craft advisory will be in effect from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Saturday.
Rip currents are expected to be strong and piers and breakwaters will be hazardous through the day. A beach hazards statement has been issued for Mason, Muskegon, Oceana, and Ottawa counties on Saturday.
Waves are expected to climb to 3 to 5 feet. Three-foot waves typically cause the most drowning incidents because swimmers are thought to underestimate their danger.
STRONG TO SEVERE STORMS
Showers and storms are expected on Saturday and some could be strong to severe. The storms headed for Michigan on Saturday haven’t even formed yet, so the forecast could still weaken or change.
Right now, there is high confidence there will be showers and storms throughout the day Saturday, with some nice breaks in the weather. Many outdoor events will likely be able to continue.
There is a chance for some of the storms Saturday afternoon and evening to be severe. The potential threat appears to be more likely and as a result, the Storm Prediction Center has upgraded West Michigan to a slight risk area for severe weather.
If storms become severe, the biggest threat would be for straight-line damaging wind gusts and the most likely time frame would be in the afternoon to evening.
In fact, one severe weather forecast model is giving most of Michigan a 30% to 40% chance of widespread damaging winds, which is a pretty high percentile compared to a typical day.
There is still a lot that could change with this system, we will be carefully monitoring the potential threat for severe weather. Stay with Storm Team 8 for updates as the situation progresses.