Two weather fronts bring down temperatures in Cape Girardeau

Saturday, July 22, 2006

Following several days of hot, humid weather, rains washed through and cooled down the Cape Girardeau area Friday afternoon.

Winds upward of 43 mph brought in the first rainfall for the area in seven days, according to Dan Spaeth, a meteorologist for National Weather Service in Paducah, Ky.

Cape Girardeau Regional Airport measured 0.02 inches of rainfall as of 7 p.m., having missed most of the scattered showers that hit the area, Spaeth said. Rainfall totals for Cape Girardeau were not immediately available, but throughout town standing water could be seen near intersections and street curbs.

Two weather fronts Friday afternoon and evening brought the rain, along with cooler temperatures to replace the hot spell that had enveloped the area with temperatures in the mid-90s and heat indexes past 100.

"When we get up into the mid-90s, that's out of the ordinary" for this time of year, Spaeth said. The highs for the next few days will be in the mid- to low 80s, possibly cooler than average, he said.

Karen McCabe of Jackson stood outside her home Friday afternoon just to feel the cool air pushed by strong winds.

"It felt wonderful," she said.

But Rich Marino, who was visiting the area from Memphis, Tenn., said even with the cooler temperatures Friday afternoon, the weather was about the same as in his hometown.

"It's not that much different," he said, acknowledging the 60- to 70-degree weather he would rather have is located much farther north.

James Taylor, of Dexter, Mo., rested on a bench facing the Mississippi River Friday afternoon while his wife shopped at antique stores.

"I'm real pleased to see a change in the weather," he said.

But with the cooler weather also came some storm-related damage.

The weather knocked out electricity to about 900 AmerenUE customers in Southeast Missouri, according to utility spokesman Mike Cleary. By 5 p.m., all but 35 customers had their power restored.

Most of the damage done was in the St. Louis region, where storms knocked out power to thousands of customers, according to Cleary.

A cable line near Millersville was knocked down and struck a vehicle traveling on Highway 72 around 1:45 p.m., according to a Missouri State Highway Patrol dispatcher. The driver was not injured, and the road was blocked temporarily while the line was removed.

Half-inch hail was reported in Perry County, and Daisy, Mo., reported trees 3 feet in diameter felled by high winds, according to weather service meteorologist Rick Shanklin.

This weekend was expected to stay cooler than this week, with a high today in the 80s and a low around 60 overnight, Shanklin said. Throughout the day would be partly sunny, with a mostly clear night.

Sunday was forecast to only be slightly warmer, he said.

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