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Hit-miss storm pattern for LI until July Fourth

Shoppers seek cover from a Monday afternoon downpour

Shoppers seek cover from a Monday afternoon downpour at the Plainview Centre on Old Country Road in Plainview. (July 1, 2013) Credit: Barry Sloan

For much of this week, the weather on each day will be a lot like the day before as a flow of moist, warm air delivers partly cloudy skies and the chance of scattered showers to Long Island.

Area forecasters said the chance of showers dips a tad as we move through the week -- although rain on the Fourth of July can't be ruled out.

"It's not a complete guarantee that it'll be dry," said Upton-based National Weather Service meteorologist Joe Picca. "Chances are, more people than not are going to stay dry during the day, but there's a slight chance for showers and thunderstorms. There are going to be drier conditions as we move through the Fourth."

It's a familiar pattern: Since last Tuesday, Long Islanders have experienced hot, humid days with the threat of thunderstorms in the late afternoon and early evening hours. That scenario is less and less likely as we get closer to Thursday, with a mostly clear, sunny Fourth to kick off, for many a four-day weekend, forecasters say.

The hit-and-miss pattern ends courtesy of a cold front from the west that will push the moist air northward, said Mike Layer, another meteorologist with the Upton-based service.

Thursday could be the day where the trend breaks, with a stretch of clear, sunny weather with highs in the low to mid-80s and nighttime lows in the 70s, Layer said.

"That's what it looks like right now for the weekend," Layer said, with the warning that it's a bit early to be predicting an almost perfect Fourth, weatherwise.

Clear and sunny skies will be a pleasant change of pace. Although the occasional burst of heavy rain has been in the forecast since Tuesday of last week, the final seven days of June closed with less than a half-inch of precipitation recorded at Islip, the service said.

With a total rainfall amount of 8.15 inches, Long Island had one of its wettest Junes, but still was 2.65 inches shy of the record, 10.8 inches in 2003.

The service did say that through Monday night there is a high risk of rip currents at Atlantic beaches and a high risk of lightning with any thunderstorm.

Heavy rain moved through late Monday morning into the early afternoon, as an urban flood advisory was issued first for Nassau County and later for western Suffolk County. Both advisories have since expired.

Also, late-morning weather Monday caused some arriving flights at LaGuardia Airport to be delayed as long as 90 minutes. Both LaGuardia and Kennedy airports also were experiencing general departure delays, according to the Federal Aviation Administration website.

Travelers were urged to check with their airline to determine if a specific flight is affected, the FAA said.

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