Flash Flood Watch

Heavy rain to bring major cooldown to Florida Peninsula

By Faith Eherts, AccuWeather meteorologist
March 19, 2019, 12:50:56 PM EDT

Much of Florida has been in a prolonged warm spell since early February a pattern that is about to come to an abrupt end.

Since Feb. 1, temperatures in Orlando have been running 5.5 degrees Fahrenheit above average. In Tampa, they have been 6.0 F above average; 5.3 F in Fort Myers; and 4.1 F in Miami. Temperatures have regularly reached into the upper 80s F, values that are typically reached in May.

Showers and cooler conditions have descended upon northern portions of the Peninsula over the past few days as a front slowly churned through the state.

In Jacksonville, temperatures failed to reach even 60 F on Sunday amid rainy conditions. This coincided with the last day of the Players Championship, during which players had otherwise enjoyed daily temperatures around 80 F with lots of sunshine.

In Orlando, temperatures were limited to the upper 60s F on Monday along with a bit of rain, putting a damper on spring breakers spending their time off at area amusement parks.

This dreary weather is expected to spread over the popular cities and beaches of South Florida by Tuesday, as well.

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Interactive Florida Radar

From Fort Myers to Palm Beach, Fort Lauderdale and Miami, conditions will be right for some thunderstorms to form. While severe weather is not expected, storms can be strong enough to produce gusty winds and flooding downpours.

The threat for flooding will be highest in low-lying and poor-drainage areas, leading to slowed traffic. Anyone on the road should take care to drive slowly and turn on their headlights in times of heavy rain and low visibility.

FL rain 3/19

Slick runways and gusty winds can lead to flight delays as well, so anyone traveling through the area should check with their airline before heading out.

While irksome, this rain will help to keep South Florida from developing drought conditions during the otherwise relatively dry winter season.

Rain is expected to move out of the area Tuesday night, allowing vacation plans to resume first thing Wednesday morning. Seasonable warmth will rebound quickly as well, with temperatures forecast to reach into the upper 70s F once again.

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