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Long Island weather: heat, humidity and possible rain

Mostly sunny skies and higher than normal temperatures will make for a prime day at the beach Saturday before a chance of showers sweeps over Long Island late-night into Sunday.

At 7 a.m. temperatures on the Island were around 70 degrees and were expected to peak in the upper 80s to around 90 in Nassau County by the afternoon, said Joe Pollina, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service’s Upton Bureau. Highs in Suffolk County will reach into the upper 80s.

Lows for Saturday night will be in the mid-70s for Nassau and upper 60s to lower 70s in Suffolk, Pollina said.

An increasing chance of showers and thunderstorms will build up into Saturday night, when the highest chance for precipitation is for after midnight, Pollina said. The chance for rain will decrease into Sunday morning, but there will still be a lingering possibility for a passing shower or thunderstorm during the day on Sunday.

The state Department of Environmental Conservation has issued an air quality alert that spans Long Island and New York City up to Westchester and Rockland counties, which will be in effect from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Saturday.

Air quality levels are predicted to be greater than an air quality index value of 100 for pollutant of ground level ozone, the warning reads.

The state Department of Health recommends that people limit strenuous outdoor physical activity in order to reduce the risk of adverse health effects, the notice reads. Those with pre-existing respiratory problems, like asthma or heart disease, as well as very young children, may be especially sensitive to the effects of elevated pollution levels.

Humidity on Saturday will be slightly lower than it was on Friday but is still considerable, said Matt Hammer, a meteorologist with News 12 Long Island. With the high temperatures coupled with the humidity and air quality issues, Hammer cautioned Long Islanders to stay hydrated.

The UV index is “very high” at a level 9 for Saturday, Hammer said. The scale goes up to 11, which is extreme. A range of 8-10 is considered “very high.”

“It will only take about 20-25 minutes to get a sunburn on unprotected skin,” Hammer said.

The ocean temperature has risen steadily over the past several weeks and is now in the lower 70s in Nassau and southwestern Suffolk and a bit cooler on the East End in the upper 60s, Pollina said. A moderate rip current risk is in effect for Long Island beaches on Saturday.

Sunday’s temperatures will be slightly cooler in Nassau County, where the mercury is expected to hit the mid- to upper 80s in Nassau and lower to mid-80s in Suffolk.

Saturday’s temperatures will be a bit above normal for this time of year, while Sunday’s will be closer to normal. At Long Island MacArthur Airport in Ronkonkoma, the normal temperatures for this weekend is a high of 82 and low of 66, Pollina said.

The weather forecast into the week shows a few showers on Monday night into Tuesday, Hammer said, but from then on to Friday the weather will be “gorgeous” with temperatures in the mid-80s all week.

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