Chilly days ahead


Jean Sperbeck, from left, Sonja Mechaney and Lynn Schneider head back to work at the Alachua County Clerk of Court's Office after a coffee break in rainy downtown Gainesville on Monday morning. “I actually like warm, wet weather,” Sperbeck said. “It feels tropical. I can't say many people agree.”

OCTAVIAN CANTILLI/Special to The Sun
Published: Tuesday, January 9, 2007 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Monday, January 8, 2007 at 11:27 p.m.

It won't be the blizzard that buried Denver, but the same system that dumped several inches of snow in parts of the West will bring chilly temperatures to North Central Florida today and the rest of the week.

The National Weather Service in Jacksonville predicted an early morning low of 36 degrees with a high of 64 for today. Overnight lows were expected to drop to 32 degrees Wednesday with a high of 59 degrees in the daytime, said National Weather Service forecaster Matt Zibura.

After several days of rainfall and warmer-than-usual weather, the brief cold snap is expected to vanish by Friday when highs creep back into the upper 70s, Zibura said.

"This is winter in Florida," Zibura said. "It's a short-lived cold spell."

So far, Gainesville has received 1 inches more rain than the average for the month of January, Zibura said.

With winds from 12 to 15 mph predicted today and dry conditions, the National Weather Service issued a red-flag warning for fire weather conditions.

Recent rainfall, however, should help lower the risk of wildfires, said Ludie Ehlers, spokeswoman for the Florida Division of Forestry.

Deborah Ball can be reached at (352) 338-3109 or balld@gvillesun.com

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