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The nation's weather

The nation's weather By The Associated Press

Weather Underground Forecast for Thursday, May 31, 2012.

Drier weather returns to much of the Northeast and Upper Mid-Atlantic on Thursday as the northern half of a cold front extending across the region moves off the New England Coast. A few showers may linger in the coastal areas as the front progresses offshore and in Maine due to an associated offshore low. Expect to see some relief from this week's heat with the passing of this front as a cooling trend begins today and continues into the weekend.

Meanwhile, the southern half of this system will stall across the Southeast into the Southern Plains. A wave of low pressure on the tail of this front in the southern Plains will lift northeastward into the Tennessee Valley by Thursday evening. Expect showers and thunderstorms to persist across much of the Eastern Valleys and portions of the Southeast as the system progresses and frontal disturbances associated with this system move through the area. There is a slight risk of severe weather development from portions of the southern Ohio Valley through south-central Texas with wind and hail events.

In the West, chances of showers will continue across the Pacific Northwest, while chances of showers and thunderstorms are anticipated in the Northern Rockies. To the south, an Excessive Heat Watch remains in effect for the Desert Southwest in southwestern Arizona and southeastern California through Friday evening as temperatures are expected reach near record values. For Thursday, some of the highest temperatures are expected to range from 108 degrees in Phoenix to 112 in Parker. Temperatures in the Lower 48 states Wednesday have ranged from a morning low of 28 degrees at Alamosa, Colo. to a high of 101 degrees at Midland Airpark, Texas

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