Wet weekend ahead for Florida with repeat thunderstorms, flood threat

Between 2 and 3 inches of rain is forecast across Florida this week, with the majority of the rain arriving this weekend. The stormy weather brings a reprieve from the extreme heat as heat alerts were lifted across Florida.

ORLANDO, Fla. – Florida has received a reprieve from the extreme summer heat in exchange for rounds of thunderstorms that will increase the flooding threat across parts of the Sunshine State through the weekend.

While summer thunderstorms are normal here, this week was more active than usual, even for Florida, as a cold front stalled across the state late this week, increasing the intensity and coverage of storms.

The rain could help the drought in the Tampa Bay area, but the repeated rain may also cause flooding in South Florida.

According to the FOX Forecast Center, 2-3 inches of rain will fall across Florida through Sunday, with the majority of the rain arriving Saturday. The forecast will repeat over the next seven days with rounds of thunderstorms. 

The stormy pattern will continue into early next week.


The summer swelter will ease up thanks to the stormy conditions, dropping highs into the 80s and 90s for Fort Lauderdale, Tampa, Orlando and Jacksonville

On Florida's east coast, temperatures will be a few degrees lower for areas such as Cocoa Beach, with greater winds between 10 and 20 mph. Although, in nearby Titusville, wind gusts reaching 46 mph were measured Friday.

Most of the Southeast has been under heat advisories with heat index values above 100 degrees. With the first round of rain early in the week, Excessive Heat Warnings and advisories began to lift, and for the first time in weeks, most of the Southeast was not under heat alerts.

Storms topple tree onto Florida school bus; lightning injures others

Severe thunderstorms brought strong winds and the potential for hail Thursday across Florida.

The West Palm Beach Police Department reported a large tree fell on a school bus with 20 students onboard during a Severe Thunderstorm Warning on Thursday afternoon. According to the National Weather Service in Miami, the storm hazards included 60-mph winds and quarter-size hail. All 20 students were evacuated and uninjured, according to police. The damages closed a section of Parker Avenue in West Palm Beach while the crash was being cleaned up. 

With frequent thunderstorms also comes the danger of lightning. Three people were injured by lightning in Central Florida between Monday and Tuesday, FOX 35 Orlando reported.  

A 12-year-old girl was struck at Sebastian Inlet beach, and her mother was knocked over by the strike, according to authorities. Another person was struck on Tuesday in Lake Nona and remained in critical condition. 

Heavy rain brings possible flooding 

Flash flooding is possible throughout Florida due to the excess rain.

The flood threat expands into South Florida this weekend. The areas most at risk are places that frequently see isolated flooding, including Miami. 

Fort Lauderdale has a nearly 40-inch surplus of rain for the year.

"The flood risk here is centered around South Florida, and unfortunately, Miami and Fort Lauderdale have both been impacted," FOX Weather meteorologist Amy Freeze said.


Some of the rain will benefit parts of Central and Southwest Florida experiencing drought conditions. 

Drought conditions ranging from Abnormally Dry to Extreme Drought persist from Naples to the Tampa Bay area. Tampa, St. Petersburg and Lakeland could receive up to 5 inches of rain during this spell of wet weather, putting a dent in the drought.