MAX DEFENDER 8 FORECAST: Summer tropical pattern sets up across Tampa Bay


TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – For the next several days, traditional shower and thunderstorm chances will be moderately high mainly within the peak heat timeframe of each day.

High pressure to the interior of the southeast deepens through the Sunshine State which will provide us with a strong easterly flow. This flow combined with the Atlantic sea-breeze and daytime heating will cause mixing to occur and will help form inland storms starting near Polk County that are expected to travel west to the Gulf Coast throughout the next several afternoons. 

At the same time, tropical moisture will pull from the south, across the west coast of Florida, and into Tropical Storm Nicholas well to the west of us. Nicholas’s path is likely to take the storm onshore between Corpus Christi, Texas, and Houston, Texas, between Monday and Tuesday. Though Nicholas will not directly impact the Tampa Bay coastal areas, the moisture pulling into Nicholas will allow for a few coastal showers and storms to develop along with our inland storms being fueled by the easterly flow. 

Scattered intense storms and isolated severe weather cannot be ruled out between 3 p.m. and 8 p.m. each day through the next work week due to our meteorological conditions. Please take caution while driving in inclement weather. Be prepared for heavy rain, pooling on highways, lower visibility, and gusty winds within these storm cells. Frequent lightning, potential hail, and tornado development are somewhat low but possible so stay storm-ready and alert. 

Even with the higher chances for storm activity around, daytime highs will remain in the lower to mid-90s for the start of the workweek. High humidity will aid in increasing our heat index to a range between 102 and 107 degrees Monday and Tuesday. The risk of heat-related illnesses will be high. 

Coastal waterways will be disturbed by both Nicholas’ activity in the Gulf and the strong easterly flow. Seas remain around two feet but our bay and inland waterways will have a moderate chop with winds offshore between 10 and 15 knots. Currently, no small craft or rip current advisories are in place however, small man-powered vessels should stay onshore. Beachgoers should keep alert to red tide pockets mainly along the Pinellas County coastline.  

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