A strong late-season winter storm will develop this week and blast the I-95 corridor from Virginia to Maine with heavy rain, snow and wind. Before this powerhouse nor’easter develops, several smaller disturbances will cross the state of Florida and potentially bring some much-needed rain. These disturbances will then come together to carve out a deep East Coast trough and send a bone-chilling blast of winter winds deep into the Southeast. I posted this “heads up” on the Florida Storms Facebook page Friday.
Rain Chances Begin Sunday
The first disturbance will arrive Sunday. Showers will be possible in the panhandle during the morning hours, followed by some heavier downpours and possible thunderstorms that will likely develop across central and northern Florida. A strong thunderstorm or two is possible during the late afternoon or early evening hours in portions of east-central Florida (see map).
Heavier Rain Possible Monday
A stronger storm system is expected to move across Florida Monday, but it will still be rather disorganized. As a result, the rain won’t be widespread. However, in spots, it could be heavy and accompanied by some thunder. The highest chances for the heavier rains will reside across portions of central Florida.
Any rain in this part of Florida is welcome news to many. 25 percent of the state is in a moderate drought, according to the The National Drought Mitigation Center.
The amounts that fall early this week are unlikely to erase the drought, but it could help with some of the ongoing wildfire fighting efforts across the state.
Strong Front Arrives Tuesday
The nor’easter will rapidly develop Tuesday off the Mid-Atlantic coast. In response to the deepening area of low pressure, gusty north winds will send a strong cold front into Florida Tuesday. A brief shower may accompany the front in some areas, but the bigger story will be the plunging temperatures by Tuesday night. The cold air will continue to pour into Florida and set the stage for two unusually cold nights for mid-March.