The cold front that had promised to create soggy conditions over Tampa Bay is firmly in control, stalled over the region and dumping heavy rain for the Thursday morning commute.
The good news? Things return to normal this weekend, meaning storms starting inland and drifting toward the west coast in the afternoon.
The wet morning conditions are fueled by the stalled front, combined with deep tropical moisture and winds from the southwest that are driving the storms off the Gulf of Mexico, according to the National Weather Service.
That front had teased to possibly strengthen into a tropical system, but forecasters with the National Hurricane Center say it will drift to the north, and upper-level winds will squash any potential development.
Thursday’s storms are expected to last throughout the day, leading to widespread showers and potentially treacherous downpours that could produce isolated flooding, gusty winds, and possible waterspouts, forecasters said. The cloud cover will keep highs only in the mid 80s.
Another round of early-morning rain is forecast for Friday, and clouds and rain will linger throughout the day, forecasters said. But normal summertime conditions will return this weekend as the front weakens, with highs again climbing into the low 90s.