Heavy rains are moving to South Florida ahead of potential Tropical Cyclone One, bringing with it a significant flood risk Friday and Saturday

Although Hurricane Hunters, who are studying the now-designated potential Friday morning tropical cyclone, continue to find several eddies near the low-pressure system in northern Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula, the plane was able to “fix” the southernmost of them as a faint center.

This may only be temporary, however, as the burst of showers and thunderstorms continues east of the still competing centers, indicating the continued presence of strong southwesterly wind shear, an ongoing nemesis for the young system in recent days.

Although the development window is rapidly closing, it would only take a small tic in organization to name the system Tropical Depression One or Tropical Storm Alex as predicted by the National Hurricane Center.

At this stage, the designation of a tropical depression or storm does not affect the expected impact on South Florida.

The first round of showers and storms associated with potential Tropical Cyclone One began moving through South Florida and the Keys as early as Friday morning. Expect weather waves on Friday, culminating in the heaviest bands and gusts penetrating later Friday through Saturday morning as the low pressure nears the southwest Florida coast.

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In addition to the primary threat of heavy rain and flooding — up to 10 to 15 inches locally — we’re seeing a threat of isolated tornadoes Friday night and early Saturday, primarily in far south Miami-Dade and Monroe counties.

Historically, tornadoes associated with tropical cyclones aren’t particularly strong (about 90 percent are historically rated EF0 or EF1), but the rapid movement of these storms, which occur during darkness and overnight, increases the threat.

Some minor coastal flooding is possible along Florida’s southwestern coast later Friday evening and early Saturday as the storm system makes landfall.

As discussed in Thursday’s newsletter, while we often associate tropical systems with their strong winds, the lesser storms can often bring severe weather, usually in the form of heavy rains and flooding.

David Roth, chief meteorologist at the government’s Weather Prediction Center, and his colleagues at the National Weather Service have curated an extensive data set of tropical cyclone precipitation for the continental United States, dating back to the turn of the 20th century.

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(WPLG)

A look back at the thousands of observations of past storms across the state of Florida shows just how effective the less violent storms can be.

In June 1992, a tropical depression, the first of the season, brought a torrent of deluge rains over the Sarasota area that lasted for several days.

More recently, Tropical Storms Fay in 2008 and Debby in June 2018 each dropped over 27 inches of rain, causing widespread flooding and damage to numerous homes.

These are the extremes, of course, but there’s a lesson to be learned from recent history in how to not ignore weaker storms early in the season. Even a few inches of heavy rain in a short enough time can cause problems.

For us here in South Florida, we should return to a more typical summer pattern of afternoon showers and thunderstorms as the weather quickly moves away from the state on Sunday.

Copyright 2022 by WPLG Local10.com – All rights reserved.

https://www.local10.com/weather/hurricane/2022/06/03/heavy-rainfall-moving-into-south-florida-ahead-of-potential-tropical-cyclone-one-bringing-significant-flood-threat-friday-saturday/ Heavy rains are moving to South Florida ahead of potential Tropical Cyclone One, bringing with it a significant flood risk Friday and Saturday

Sarah Y. Kim

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