It’s cold out there, campers — from Atlanta to Miami Beach

Disc jockey No. 1: “Okay, campers, rise and shine, and don’t forget your booties ’cause it’s cooooold out there today.”

Disc jockey No. 2: “It’s coooold out there every day. What is this, Miami Beach?”

Well the radio disc jockeys got it right in Punxsutawney — every day — in Bill Murray’s Groundhog Day classic.

Saturday morning wind chills. (Credit: NWS-Tallahassee)

But after the muscular cold front that caused so much mayhem across the southeastern U.S. rips through the Florida peninsula this weekend, even Miami Beach won’t feel like Miami Beach.

The front was surging through North Florida early Saturday morning, leaving wind chills in the teens as far south as Dothan, in southern Alabama. In Tallahassee, it felt like 30 degrees.

Atlanta was under a winter storm warning Saturday for snow, sleet and ice with wind chills reaching below zero in some surrounding areas.

Almost a quarter of an inch of ice fell in North Georgia, making for dangerous travel conditions. Atlanta firefighters rescued a 3-year-old trapped in a house after a tree came down, according to the National Weather Service.

The Weather Service in Jacksonville posted a hard freeze warning for parts of North Florida, including Lake City, where Saturday night/ Sunday morning temperatures were forecast to tumble into the mid-20s.

A freeze warning for temperatures in the low 30s was issued for Gainesville and Ocala, and on the Atlantic Coast for areas just north of Daytona Beach.

With breezy conditions expected, wind chills in North Florida may drop as low as 15 degrees by Sunday morning.

Even in South Florida, Sunday morning temps are likely to be “the coldest so far this winter season,” National Weather Service forecasters said in their Saturday analysis, “with lowest wind chills early Sunday morning in the upper 20s and lower 30s when combined with the gusty winds.”

Highs along Florida’s southeast coast will only be in the mid-60s.

Sunday’s forecast high in Miami Beach: 65 degrees. Monday: 69. The normal high in Miami Beach is 74 with an average low of 61.

Temperatures will start moderating late Sunday, particularly on Florida’s East Coast, as winds swing around to the northeast. That brings warmer air in from the Atlantic, where water temperatures off Palm Beach remain in the toasty 77 degree range.

Look for South Florida highs edging back into the upper 70s later in the week, with lows in the upper 60s from Miami Beach to West Palm Beach.

Those overnight temps will still be 5-10 degrees above normal for this time of the year.


The Northeast will likely get walloped by a snow storm over the weekend, with up to 4 inches in New York  and up to a foot in the Boston area through Sunday. (Credit: NOAA/ WPC)


Author: jnelander

Freelance writer and editor

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