After a Saturday that featured blazing heat and stifling humidity across southern Minnesota, lower temperatures and thunderstorms were expected to bring a cool reprieve on Sunday.
Highs reached the middle to upper 90s in the Twin Cities and other parts of southern Minnesota on Saturday. But the heat index made it feel hotter than 100 degrees in some areas. A wind advisory issued by the National Weather Service ended late Saturday afternoon, but the heat advisory lasted into the evening.
Throughout the day, strong winds and widespread use of air conditioners and fans contributed to power failures that affected thousands of Xcel Energy customers. And several air-conditioning repair businesses in the Twin Cities said they couldn’t get caught up with calls from people whose units were on the fritz.
Fortunately, the heat didn’t create an emergency at Hennepin County Medical Center in Minneapolis, which reported only a few weather-related cases.
The National Weather Service in Chanhassen had cautioned that the combination of high temperatures and humidity would create a situation in which serious heat illnesses were possible. It advised people to drink plenty of fluids, stay in an air-conditioned room, avoid the sun, and check up on elderly relatives and neighbors.
That’s still good advice for the next few days, when temperatures will fall a little, but it will remain steamy — and become very rainy.
Sunday’s high is forecast at 82 in the metro area, with showers and thunderstorms likely much of the day. Some storms could be severe, with large hail and damaging winds, the Weather Service warned. Rainfall of up to a couple of inches is possible, so travelers were warned to be on the lookout for flash flooding on low-lying roads.
The chance of rain will continue overnight Sunday and into Monday, when the high is expected to be 86. Tuesday’s high will be back in the 90s with a good chance of showers, especially overnight.
A few rainy days will be welcomed by gardeners and farmers, who have gone for several days without precipitation after a very wet spring.
Highs for the rest of the week will be in the 80s, the Weather Service said.
To help those with no air conditioning, Hennepin County has created an interactive map on its website of places to cool down. Maps are available for desktop or mobile devices.
Cool options include Salvation Army buildings, libraries, recreation centers, movie theaters and shopping malls. The map allows residents to zoom in on specific locations in neighborhoods and find addresses, hours of operation and more.