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Sweltering Start to Summer in Florida

June 21, 2019

The summer solstice arrived Friday, which usually means nothing in Florida. It’s been hot for weeks. However, this weekend’s heat reaches a new level. Sweltering!

The persistent feed of moisture that dumped a foot of rain over parts of the Peninsula the past two weeks is shutting down. Replacing it will be an upper-level area of higher pressure. The air mass at this altitude is much drier, and with the sinking air will come fewer thunderstorms.

The drier, hotter trend began Friday.

With fewer storms, the strong June sun angle will boost temperatures into the middle 90s for areas away from the beaches. Unlike the heatwave experienced in May, the air closer to the ground is far more humid from recent rain. The combination of higher humidity and hot temperatures will boost heat index (or “feels like”) values to 105 degrees or more across the entire state this weekend.

Heat Safety Reminders

As a member of the Weather Ready Nation, the Florida Public Radio Emergency Network wants to remind you of some heat safety tips.

  • It is NEVER safe to leave a toddler, disabled person or pet locked in a car.
  • To prevent the onset of a heat-related illness, such as heat exhaustion or heat stroke...
    • Limit or eliminate strenuous activities during the hottest part of the day
    • Wear lightweight, loose fitting, light-colored clothing
    • Eat light, cool easy-to-digest foods such as fruit or salads
    • Drink plenty of (cool, not cold) water, non-alcoholic and decaffeinated fluids. Even if you don’t feel thirsty.
    • Spend as much time as you can in the shade or air conditioned areas, and minimize your direct exposure to the sun.
  • If you or someone you know experiences symptoms such as dizziness, nausea, muscle cramps, rapid pulse or red skin, he or she may be experiencing the onset of heat exhaustion or heat stroke. You’re encouraged to immediately request medical attention and move to a cooler environment.

The heat is something most Floridians have become accustomed to. However, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention say heat-related illnesses become more likely to occur when the temperature or heat index breaches 100 for two or more days in row. For this reason, forecasters at the National Weather Service will be monitoring conditions closely this weekend, and Heat Advisories could be issued.

This latest heatwave is expected to last through the weekend and ease Tuesday or Wednesday of next week. At that time, several model simulations show the area of high pressure breaking down, which should mark a return to more clouds, greater rain chances, and average late June temperatures.

Sources include nearest National Weather Service office, National Hurricane Center, and the Florida Public Radio Emergency Network (@FloridaStorms).
Sources include nearby emergency management agencies, FEMA, and your local NPR affiliate. 
Sources include the Florida Department of Transportation, Florida Highway Patrol and other nearby traffic information.

1885 Stadium Road
PO Box 118405
Gainesville, FL 32611
(352) 392-5551

A service of WUFT at the University of Florida College of Journalism and Communications 

Partners of the Florida Public Radio Emergency Network include: Florida's Division of Emergency Management, WDNA (Miami), WFIT (Melbourne), WMFE (Orlando), WFSU (Tallahassee), WGCU (Fort Myers), WJCT (Jacksonville), WKGC (Panama City), WLRN (Miami), WMNF (Tampa-Sarasota), WQCS (Fort Pierce), WUFT (Gainesville-Ocala), WUSF (Tampa), WUWF (Pensacola) and Florida Public Media.

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