Temperatures to cool off this weekend
By Rob Ollikainen
Peninsula Daily News
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It will be slightly cooler today than it was Thursday, but forecasters said the real change happens this weekend.
“We’ll have clouds coming in from the south,” said Chris Burke, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Seattle.
“It will just be cloudier and therefore cooler. You guys will probably see more marine influence than us.”
The temperature in Port Angeles was 78 degrees at 1:30 p.m. Thursday. It was 89 and climbing at the same time in Seattle, Burke said.
A red-flag warning issued for fire dangers on the West End and Hood Canal areas had been lifted by Thursday.
The warning, which covered much of Western Washington but not the central or eastern Strait of Juan de Fuca, was for risks associated with high temperatures, low humidity and moderate or high winds.
“We haven’t had that trifecta quite yet,” Port Angeles Fire Department Acting Chief and Fire Marshal Ken Dubuc said.
An excessive heat warning remained in effect for the I-5 corridor Thursday afternoon.
“You guys never had any sort of excess heat warning,” Burke said.
“You guys are fine.”
The forecast highs for Peninsula cities Thursday were 83 for Port Angeles, 81 for Sequim, a mild 73 in Port Townsend and a toasty 95 in Forks.
Today’s forecast calls for a high of 81 in both Port Angeles and Sequim, 72 in Port Townsend and 88 in Forks.
By Saturday, the mercury is expected to fall to 75 in Port Angeles and Sequim and 72 in Forks and Port Townsend.
Port Townsend reached 80 degrees Wednesday and cooled off faster than its neighbors.
The Weather Service predicts a 30 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms for all four Peninsula cities Saturday evening.
Firefighters will keep a close watch on the threat of lightning because of dry conditions, East Jefferson Fire-Rescue Deputy Chief of Operations Ted Krysinski said.
Krysinski said there had been no weather-related fires reported as of Thursday.
“But that doesn’t mean it won’t happen in the next couple days,” he added.
“We’ll see what Mother Nature has in store.”
Dubuc said dry conditions contributed to a small grass fire near the corner of Seventh and H streets at 8:13 p.m. Wednesday.
“That’s really the only one we had, knock on wood,” Dubuc said.
Dubuc reminded the public to use caution when conditions are warm and dry.
“Prevention is the key,” he said.
“People just need to be aware of the conditions and be extra careful right now.”
Reporter Rob Ollikainen can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 5072, or at email@example.com.
Last modified: August 16. 2012 5:47PM