After a week of unusually chilly weather for late spring, an intense heat wave is forecast for Berkshire County and the rest of the Northeast, starting Sunday.
But, first, there is a potential for severe weather Thursday and Friday, with thunderstorms forming in western and central New York state, moving into western New England in the afternoons and evenings. Heavy rainfall, gusty winds and possible hail are the main threats, depending on the track of the storms.
Daytime highs are expected to reach 90 degrees or above Sunday through Tuesday, according to the National Weather Service, accompanied by tropical humidity. A heat wave officially is defined as three days in a row of 90 or higher.
The dome of hot air that built up in the Pacific Northwest and moved eastward over the past few days is expected to be parked just west of Buffalo, N.Y., early next week, AccuWeather.com reported.
Daily record highs could be equaled, with temperatures running 15 to 25 degrees above normal for early June.
Average temperatures at Pittsfield Municipal Airport range from 51 to 73 from June 6 to June 9. Record highs for early next week are from 90 to 92.
“At this time it looks like the peak of the heat will be in the Monday/Tuesday time frame,” said Brian Montgomery, meteorologist at the government forecast office in Albany, N.Y. On Wednesday, with the approach of showers, some moderate relief is possible, he added.