Tropical, oppressive, dangerous heat indices arrive this week

Posted at 7:35 PM, Jul 15, 2019
and last updated 2019-07-15 23:21:38-04

WEST MICHIGAN -- It's hard to not get excited about a heat index that will approach 100 to 105 degrees this week in West Michigan. That combination of temperature and humidity gives us what's known as the "feels like" temperature...or heat index. Readings that hot don't happen all the time. While actual air temperatures will make the low/mid 90s, the heat index will be much higher. Climatologically speaking, this week is typically the hottest week (on average) all year in West Michigan.

While most of us might be thinking about dialing down the thermostat at home in order to stay cool, Consumer's Energy advises otherwise. They recommend setting your thermostat to 78 degrees when you’re home, and higher when you’re away. For every degree you turn up your thermostat, Consumers estimates customer savings between 1 and 3 percent on cooling costs.

It goes without saying to consume liquids to stay hydrated (water is preferred), check on the elderly, and wear light/loose fitting clothing. The beaches along Lake Michigan may be a good choice the next several days (don't forget the sunblock), or the movie theatre or mall. In the old days before our childhood home had A/C, we would retreat to the basement where it was always cooler/more comfortable.

Take a look at what our forecast model is forecasting for "feels like" temperatures from Thursday through Sunday. We'll start with Thursday below.

Friday's "feels like" temperature is below.

Our Saturday "feels like" temperature is below.

And last, our Sunday "feels like" temperature is next (below). We may start easing the heat and humidity by next Monday and beyond.

It's also a good reminder that leaving kids and pets in cars, even for the shortest period, can become deadly very quickly. See below.

One more thing, similar to a wind chill chart, below is a heat index chart that combines temperature and relative humidity in order to derive the "feels like" temperature. Thanks to NOAA and the National Weather Service.

Get the complete West Michigan forecast at Make sure to stay up on later forecasts, and please be safe!