Unsettled weather may add to 4th fireworks

As hot and steamy weather settled into Boston for the third straight day, a string of thunderstorms passing through Southeastern Massachusetts Sunday brought cooling relief for some, but could threaten Boston’s Fourth of July plans with scattered rain and thunder showers predicted.

The thunderstorms also brought dangerous lightning, which struck five people in two separate incidents.

Boston’s temperature reached 91 just after 2 p.m. Sunday, but slightly lower temperatures on Friday prevented an official three-day heat wave.


“It’s safe to say that it was a heat wave in portions of Eastern Massachusetts, but Boston came up a bit short on Friday,” said meteorologist Bill Simpson.

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The weekend’s string of thunderstorms around New England caused several lightning strikes.

Around 4 p.m. Sunday, three teenagers were indirectly struck in Glocester, R.I., and two of them — a 13-year-old boy and a 14-year-old girl — were taken to Hasbro Children’s Hospital in Providence, said Glocester Police dispatcher Ericka Newman.

Additionally, a husband and wife from Massachusetts reported being struck by lightning Friday night while camping in Acadia National Park in Maine, according to park reports.

The lightning struck a vehicle around 9:30 p.m. and then traveled 30 feet to the campers’ tent, the report states. The couple was taken to Mount Desert Island Hospital in Bar Harbor with injuries that weren’t life-threatening, according to the report.


For the Fourth of July, Simpson said, temperatures could return to the 90s, but backyard barbecues may be spoiled by scattered showers and storms in the afternoon.

New England residents should carry out their holiday barbecues and outdoor plans, but should “keep one eye on the sky,” said Glenn Field, a National Weather Service warning coordination meteorologist.

Field said that lightning can strike whenever thunder is heard, and it can also strike up to 10 miles outside the rain area.

Describing what residents can do to protect themselves during a thunderstorm, Field recited a familiar caution: “When thunder roars, go indoors; if you can hear it, fear it; if you can see it, flee it.”

Colin A. Young can be reached at Follow him on Twitter @ColinAYoung. Jaclyn Reiss can be reached at Follow her on Twitter @JaclynReiss.