Phoenix weather: Isolated thunderstorms Monday night

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by Brittney Shipp

azfamily.com

Posted on August 20, 2012 at 9:32 PM

Updated Monday, Aug 20 at 9:40 PM

PHOENIX -- The Southeast Valley is the target for Mother Nature.

Widely spread showers moved in just after 6 p.m. Monday. By 7 p.m., the National Weather Service issued a Severe Thunderstorm Warning for the East Valley, meaning strong cells could produce winds up to 60 mph.

This is our first round of a few chances we will see this week. We have deep monsoonal moisture already in place, coupled with an area of high pressure hanging over Arizona. The high-pressure ridge will move off to the east after Monday, allowing a new system to move closer.

We are focusing on an area of low pressure developing in the Pacific off the California coast. As that migrates closer to Arizona over the next few days, it will tap into the moisture and produce a better chance of thunderstorms by Wednesday and lingering chances into Thursday.

Wednesday is our best chance for widespread rainfall versus the "popcorn" showers we are experiencing tonight. "Popcorn" showers refer to very isolated development of rain that "pops" up over a small portion of the Valley.

The other great thing about this week’s forecast is slightly cooler temperatures, even the possibility of double digits by Thursday. It’s still a high of 97, so we can’t get too excited. But if it’s below average for this time of year, we will take it!

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