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Potentially Disruptive Storms Pose Threat to July 4th Travel and Festivities in South and Northeast

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Severe Storms Expected During 4th of July Holiday Weekend

Risk of Severe Thunderstorms Across the East Coast

This extended 4th of July holiday weekend, a wide swath from New York and Pennsylvania down to Arkansas is at risk for severe storms. Around 51 million people in this area, including Nashville, Louisville, Philadelphia, Memphis, Baltimore, Charlotte, and Washington D.C., are under the threat of severe thunderstorms on Sunday. The strongest storms will likely hit Kentucky and Tennessee, bringing damaging wind gusts over 65 mph and hail the size of ping pong balls. Although the possibility of a tornado cannot be ruled out.

The storms are expected to start in Kentucky and Tennessee after 2 p.m. CT and continue into the evening and overnight hours as they shift into the Appalachians. Scattered showers will persist throughout Sunday, with the strongest storms occurring in the afternoon and evening hours.

Storm System Moving Towards the Carolinas and Mid-Atlantic

On Monday, the storm system will shift towards the Carolinas and Mid-Atlantic region, targeting around 29 million people in Philadelphia, Baltimore, Charlotte, and Raleigh. Damaging winds, large hail, and the possibility of tornadoes will be possible in this region. The storms may persist into Monday evening and night.

Weather Outlook for 4th of July Holiday

As the July 4th holiday approaches, the Northeast and Southeast regions can expect scattered showers and temperatures in the 80s and 90s respectively. Meanwhile, the Midwest and Rockies regions may experience rainfall, while the West will have sunny and dry weather with temperatures ranging from the 70s to the 100s.

Heat Alerts and Record-breaking Temperatures

In addition to the severe storms, around 63 million people across the country are under heat alerts. Cities like Raleigh, Charlotte, Atlanta, Tallahassee, Montgomery, New Orleans, Corpus Christi, Phoenix, Tucson, Bakersfield, Sacramento, and Portland are included in these alerts. More than 30 temperature records may be broken on Sunday across eight different states.

On Saturday, Tallahassee saw a high of 100 degrees, tying a record set in 1990. The National Weather Service also issued a heat alert for New Orleans, with heat indices expected to reach up to 110 degrees. Similar hot temperatures are expected throughout the Southeast, with heat index values close to 115 degrees. However, a passing cold front will help bring temperatures closer to seasonal highs for the remainder of the holiday week.

In the West, heat alerts are in effect until Tuesday as temperatures range from 100 to 120 degrees. However, temperatures will drop to at or below average temperatures across California and Arizona for the second half of the week.

Potential Impact on New Business

The severe storms and extreme heat expected during the 4th of July holiday weekend could have a significant impact on new businesses, particularly those in the affected regions. Here's a hot take on how this weather could affect a new business:

1. Outdoor Events and Businesses: If your new business relies on outdoor events or activities, such as an outdoor market, music festival, or food truck, the severe storms could disrupt your plans. High winds, heavy rain, and hail can damage equipment, tents, and merchandise. It may also deter potential customers from attending or participating in your event.

2. Tourism and Hospitality: For businesses in popular tourist destinations, such as coastal cities or historical sites, the severe storms and heat alerts can affect the number of visitors. Travelers may choose to alter their plans or stay indoors, leading to reduced foot traffic, hotel bookings, and restaurant visits.

3. Safety Concerns: The safety of your customers and employees should always be a top priority. Severe storms, including the possibility of tornadoes, pose risks to individuals and property. It's crucial for new businesses to have contingency plans in place and provide clear communication on their response to adverse weather conditions.

4. Heat-related Challenges: The extreme heat alerts can pose challenges for businesses that operate in non-air-conditioned environments or involve physical labor. Employees and customers may be less inclined to spend extended periods outdoors or engage in intense physical activities. It's important to consider the well-being of your staff and adjust schedules or provide adequate cooling measures to ensure everyone's safety.

Despite these challenges, this weather can also present unique opportunities. For instance, if your business is in the indoor entertainment or retail sector, customers seeking shelter from the storms may provide an increase in foot traffic.

In conclusion, being aware of and prepared for the severe storms and heat alerts during the 4th of July weekend can help new businesses navigate potential disruptions and ensure the safety and satisfaction of their customers and employees.

Article First Published at: https://www.cnbc.com/2023/07/02/severe-storms-threaten-july-4th-travel-across-south-and-northeast.html

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