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    Start of Rainy Season Delayed in Florida

    By By Alex Sosnowski, Expert Senior Meteorologist.
    May 26, 2011, 2:53:37 PM EDT

    "Wind shear is foiling a weak tropical disturbance over the Bahamas, causing it to break up..."

    Late May into early June is typically the start of the rainy season in Florida. However, it appears the arrival of daily showers and thunderstorms is on hold.

    A zone of high pressure extending from the Atlantic westward to the northwest Gulf Coast will continue to deprive much of Florida and the other northern Gulf coast locations of rainfall.

    Wind shear is foiling a weak tropical disturbance over the Bahamas, causing it to break up today.

    Tropical Weather Expert Dan Kottlowski stated," Part of the feature is being forced to the southeast, while the other part is drifting to the west-northwest."

    "Neither of the two features are likely to bring organized rainfall as far as Florida is concerned." Kottlowski added.

    While the high pressure zone won't be strong enough to keep areas totally dry, it will prevent what is usually the daily dose of rainfall.

    Orlando typically experiences a dramatic upward swing in rainfall from May to June. During June, nearly twice as much rain falls (almost 7.50 inches) when compared to May (3.75 inches).

    In addition, rainfall since April 1 has been lacking. Orlando has received only 40 percent of their normal rainfall since the start of April.

    So far this has not been a major problem for the Orlando area.

    According to Meteorologist Mark Mancuso, "When you throw in intense sunshine and sandy soil, things can get very dry in a hurry."

    The ongoing dry conditions have made for a tough wildfire season. A number of fires continued over the sunshine state this week according to the Division of Forestry of the Florida Department of Agriculture.


    400x266_05241553_sedrought


    There have been a few pockets where rainfall has been on the mark, such as Miami and Tampa. However, there are also other areas such as Key West and West Palm Beach, where rainfall has only been 10 to 15 percent of normal since early April.

    Jacksonville and Melbourne have had similar departures to Orlando.

    Areas farther west have been running in the 2 to 10 percent of normal category from Mobile to New Orleans and Houston.

    The drought is much worse from Texas to New Mexico.

    The drought is helping the flooding situation slightly in the Mississippi Delta region, where massive spillway gates were opened in recent weeks to lower river levels in Baton Rouge and New Orleans.

    However, rainfall continues to target areas farther north, near where the Ohio and Mississippi rivers meet. The rainfall is leading to some new, but modest rises on Old Man River in some areas and a stall in the recession of waters in others.


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    A zone of showers and thunderstorms will continue to hover over part of the northern Caribbean islands and the Bahamas in the days ahead.

    Some long range computer models continue to indicate a weak low pressure area forming near this zone in the weeks ahead. However, that is not atypical for this area, this time of the year.

    Rain has not been a stranger to the northern Caribbean islands so far this spring. It appears the wet weather pattern will continue over much of this area.

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