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We wll not see a lot of change to the forecast heading into the weekend. As high pressure to our west lifts north, winds here in Central Florida will shift to the northeast. This will allow for a stronger east coast sea breeze, but also keep some drier air in place. Thunderstorms will be possible as the seabreeze moves inland, but only around 30 percent.
Most areas will experience another above-average day with highs in the mid-90s and heat index values in the triple digits. A heat advisory has been issued again for this afternoon for Flagler and Marion counties where heat index readings may climb as high as 106 to 111 degrees. High temperatures will likely fall short of the existing records, but we may reach within a few degrees. The existing record for Orlando will likely hold for another year, which is 100 degrees last set in 1980. Both Daytona Beach and Melbourne may come within about 2 to 3 degrees of their existing records for this date. (Daytona Beach -- 97 degrees, set in 1980; Melbourne -- 96 degrees, set in 1993.)
The short term will not feature any drastic changes, however, with another hot and humid day in store. Onshore winds in the afternoon may help instigate pop-up showers and storms along sea breeze boundary collisions, perhaps with slightly more coverage than recent days. Evening storms will diminish once the sun sets, but conditions will remain quite warm and muggy into the overnight. Lows will bottom out in the middle to upper 70s with fair skies through daybreak.
The weekend will bring a continuation of the hot temperatures in the mid-90s, but there will be more opportunities to cool off from afternoon storms. Rain chances return to 40 percent by Monday into the upcoming week.
As is typical this time in August, the tropics are starting to become a bit more active. The system of interest remains labeled Invest 96L, moving northwestward into the northeastern Caribbean Sea today and crossing the Leeward Islands. As environmental conditions improve over the next day or so, Invest 96L will likely become classified as a tropical cyclone and ultimately Tropical Storm or Hurricane Cristobal as it moves closer to Puerto Rico and the southern Bahamas. Long-range models largely take this feature northeast again after brushing the Bahamas, therefore curving away from Florida and the Eastern Seaboard. However, there is still much uncertainty to this forecast and a lot can change over the next several days.
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