Meteorologists predict stormy Thursday night


Marshall Roddy and his dog, Maggie Mae, look for potential camp sites on the shallow waters of Orange Lake in McIntosh, Fla., Wednesday, January 20, 2010.

Erica Brough/Gainesville Sun
Published: Wednesday, January 20, 2010 at 6:54 p.m.
Last Modified: Wednesday, January 20, 2010 at 6:54 p.m.

The clear, blue skies that hung over Gainesville for the past few days will be replaced with dark storm clouds today, as a low pressure system makes its way down from the Missouri Valley.

Facts

LOCAL FORECAST

The National Weather Service provided this forecast for the Gainesville over the next few days:

Wednesday night: A 40 percent chance of showers, mainly after 1 a.m. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 52. Calm wind becoming south between 4 and 7 mph.
Thursday: Showers and thunderstorms likely, mainly after 1 p.m. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 75. Breezy, with a south wind 7 to 10 mph increasing to between 15 and 18 mph. Winds could gust as high as 28 mph. Chance of precipitation is 70 percent.

Thursday night: A 50 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 56. Breezy, with a west wind between 9 and 15 mph.
Friday: Mostly cloudy, then gradually becoming sunny, with a high near 71. West wind between 8 and 13 mph, with gusts as high as 23 mph.
Friday night: Mostly clear, with a low around 44. West wind around 6 mph becoming calm.
Saturday: Sunny, with a high near 72.

Jason Deese, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Jacksonville, said the bulk of the storm will make its way through the area throughout the late afternoon and evening, and could bring severe thunderstorms.

For Gainesville, this means an 80 percent chance of rain, a chance of lightning strikes and strong winds. Surrounding areas could also be affected.

“With this particular system, everybody in Northeast Florida is pretty much going to be in the same boat,” Deese said.

The storm is expected to blanket the northern part of the state through the night but should begin clearing out Friday.

However, a secondary system is expected to push through Sunday evening, and will darken the skies through Monday.

Deese advised residents to keep an umbrella handy throughout the rest of the week, and to stay informed about any changes in weather conditions.

“If you have a weather radio. then just make sure that it's working,” he said. “And make sure you listen to your local media outlets for any breaking weather news.”

Meantime, highs through the weekend will be mostly in the mid-70s, while lows through the weekend will remain mild. The low Friday morning is expected to dip into the mid-40s, but Saturday and Sunday's low to fall only into the mid-50s.

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