Strong storms fired up for our Friday afternoon. Some of the storms had high wind, heavy rain, and frequent lightning. One of the strong storms that moved across Volusia County actually produced an EF-0 tornado. The tornado touched down at Massey Ranch Air Park in Edgewater at 4:26pm. Damage was reported as winds were estimated between 70 and 80 miles per hour. Conditions will be much quieter for the rest of the night now that the storms have weakened.
Although afternoon storms will remain in the forecast through the weekend, as we have seen for the last two days, coverage of storms will be isolated and focus on the east side of the peninsula. There is enough heat, moisture and instability to generate storms across the interior each afternoon through the weekend and into next week, although the conditions will be a bit drier in the middle and upper levels of the atmosphere, leading to fewer storms than normal during the end of July. The storms that do form will be locally strong with gusty winds and frequent lightning. Heavy rain will also be a concern, along with ponding of water on the roads and localized flooding in poor drainage areas.
Storms each afternoon this weekend will be hit-or-miss; not everyone will see them. Before they develop, plan on a hot, muggy day area wide with highs climbing into the low 90s for most locations over the inland counties. A few spots along and north of I-4 may reach the middle 90s, due to slightly less cloud cover and storm development. Coastal areas will stay closer to 90 degrees. Southwest winds will provide a steady flow of humid air, making it feel a lot hotter than the actual air temperature. Heat index values will soar to the upper 90s and low 100s. Storms will weaken once the sun sets each evening for the next couple of days, tapering to showers which should end shortly after midnight.
This pocket of slightly drier air in the middle and upper levels of the atmosphere with remain overhead through the weekend, allowing rain chances to be reduced but not entirely. We still will find a few storms each afternoon, providing an opportunity to cool off from readings in the low to mid 90s. Lows will consistently run in the middle 70s.
In the tropics, we are watching a few weak tropical waves moving westbound north of the Equator, but none are showing promising signs of development. No systems are expected to form within the next five days.
Tune in for your Tropical Updates at :21 & :51 minutes past each hour.
Weather can be mysterious, exciting and sometimes dangerous. That's why News 13 created Project Weather to help provide kids with the information they need to stay safe. Project Weather is made up of interactive educational resources to help prepare students for the future.