The local climate is putting San Francisco weather watchers through a lot these days: record-breaking heat waves abruptly cut off by summery fog, and then on Monday night an out-of-nowhere thunderstorm that turned the skies into a pyrotechnic palette the likes of which Bay Area locals rarely see.
According to the National Weather Service, it’s possible a repeat performance is in the works, although meteorologists put the odds fairly low.
The current San Francisco forecast calls for about a 20 percent chance of thunderstorms on Tuesday after 11 a.m. and the same odds for Tuesday night.
If that doesn’t pan out then there’s still another trailing 20 percent chance for thunderbolts and lightning on Wednesday morning.
“Winds could gust as high as 20 mph. New rainfall amounts of less than a tenth of an inch, except higher amounts possible in thunderstorms,” the forecast notes.
A reported 20 to 30 percent chance is not very pressing. But just in case, NWS reminds locals that “cloud to ground lightning” is dangerous and to head indoors during such storms.
There’s even an “increased risk of small hail”—again, not very likely, as the prevailing odds favor a sunny day. But stranger things have happened.
Warnings and long odds aside, most storm watchers are probably hoping for a repeat performance, given how well last night’s displays played for eager camera lenses and receptive social media feeds. Some 800 recorded lightning strikes went down in just a few hours.