Loud Thunder Expected Tuesday But Why?

WOAY-TV (Oak Hill, WV): A warm front will push across southern West Virginia Tuesday at midday and produce loud thunderstorms.

A surge of warm, humid air will push into the region Tuesday between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m., setting off a round of thunderstorms. Even though severe weather is not expected, the sound will be much louder than a typical thunderstorm. The reason– the sound waves will emanate below a strong inversion (a layer in the atmosphere around 5,000 feet with very warm temperatures).

In this diagram, the sound waves hit the inversion and bend back down towards the ground, making the thunder appear to sound louder to everyone. Similarly, radio signals act the same way, so that is why you can hear a radio station’s signal at a farther distance if you are under the inversion.

The warm front will bring humid weather back into the region Tuesday afternoon, along with clearing skies and temperatures soaring into the upper 60s.

Chief Meteorologist Chad Merrill has the latest forecast:

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