Heavy rain possible in South Florida next week; Jeff Masters leaving Weather Underground

Expected rainfall totals SFL

Expected rainfall totals through Tuesday in South Florida. (Image credit: NWS-Miami)

RAIN EVENT UPDATE: The National Weather Service has been talking over the past few days about an increase in precipitation across the peninsula the middle of next week. Forecasters say this event is coming into better focus, due to a trough coming down from the north and another coming up from the south.

“This trough will slowly move east across the Florida Peninsula middle of next week,” the NWS Miami office said Saturday. “At the same time, a low level trough over the Northwestern Caribbean Sea will move slowly northward into South Florida. The combination of these will bring in deeper tropical moisture to South Florida leading to scattered to numerous showers and some thunderstorms.”

Rain chances around South Florida jump from 50 percent Monday to 70 percent Tuesday and 80 percent on Wednesday.

“We will need to continue to monitor the latest forecast models on this developing trend of possible heavy rainfall over South Florida for early to middle of next week,” forecasters said.

Rain chances in Central Florida are at 30-40 percent during this period; but up to 60 percent in the Tampa area and 40-50 percent in North Florida.


SUDDEN TRACK CHANGE: Jeff Masters, who co-founded Weather Underground in 1995 and developed a popular tropical weather blog — most recently called Category 6 — is leaving the IBM-owned company at the end of the month.

Weather Underground was sold to The Weather Channel in 2012, and to IBM in 2016.

“I am grateful to weather.com and IBM for making me feel welcome and allowing me to continue covering what I love, but I’ve never felt comfortable in a large corporate environment–I was more in my element back in the old days of WU,” he said in a Category 6 blog post Friday.

Masters will be writing for the Scientific American website with a new blog called “Eye of the Storm: the Science Behind Extreme Weather.”

“I will be averaging 50 posts per year—a lot less than the 150 – 200 posts per year I’ve been doing for Category 6.”

His co-blogger, Bob Henson, will continue writing for Category 6.

“The Scientific American website does not allow comments on their posts, so I plan on engaging with the WU community in the comments section of Category 6 to discuss my posts at Scientific American,” Masters said.


Continental US - Clean Longwave Window - IR

Saturday’s Gulf of Mexico satellite showed the disturbance in the western Caribbean. (Image credit: NOAA)

TROPICS WATCH: The National Hurricane Center predicts an area of low pressure will form over the next five days in the Atlantic between the Azores and Bermuda. They gave it a 40 percent chance of becoming the next tropical depression, or Tropical Storm Melissa, as it moves toward the west.

An area of disturbed weather in the northwestern Caribbean (left) was not on the NHC’s radar, but it’s been firing up some fairly vigorous convection over the last couple of days.

The GFS is showing a couple of systems toward the end of its 16-day run in the southern Caribbean, one of which rolls into Central America and another that comes off the Central America Central America coast late in the run, and moves into the Keys and South Florida as a tropical storm.

The forecast model has been flip-flopping back and forth on development in the Caribbean for at least the last week, but there doesn’t seem to be anything of concern in Florida’s neck of the woods over the next week to 10 days or so.

Author: jnelander

Freelance writer and editor

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