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A cold front will bring storms and gusty winds to the Tampa area ahead of another cool-down

Florida Public Radio Emergency Network

Portions of Hillsborough, Pinellas, Pasco and Sarasota counties were under a tornado warning and a Coastal Flood Statement is in effect from Tarpon Springs to the north as the front will produce powerful storms, dangerous winds and rough surf.

A cold front is forecast to bring potentially severe storms and gusty winds to the greater Tampa Bay region through Sunday.

According to the National Weather Service, the front moved through the lower Mississippi Valley on Saturday and was forecast to move north to south starting overnight Saturday and into Sunday.

The National Weather Service issued tornado warnings early Sunday morning portions of Pinellas, Hillsborough, Pasco and Sarasota counties a strong line of stormed moved east from the Gulf of Mexico.

The Florida Department of Emergency Management warns the storms could produce wind gusts of 45-60 mph and isolated tornadoes, along with heavy rains and localized flooding – especially in low-lying areas.

While there’s an 80% chance of rain on Sunday, the storms and chance for severe weather will ease starting late Sunday morning and into the afternoon, forecasters said. But the front will continue to produce strong winds and dangerous surf.

Boaters should use caution, as a Coastal Flood Warning is in effect for Tarpon Springs north to the Suwannee River as tides will run 2-4 feet above normal.

Waters south of Tarpon Springs are under a Coastal Flood Statement with tides 1-3 feet above normal expected.

The high tides and rough surf will produce dangerous rip currents along the Gulf beaches starting Saturday night and continuing into Tuesday, forecasters said.

Highs on Sunday will reach the upper 60s, with lows in the low 60s.

As the front passes, it will leave chilly winds from the north to northwest and drier. Lows on Sunday will drop into the 50s – and the 40s to the north. Highs on Monday and Tuesday will only reach into the low 60s, with lows dropping into the 30s in the Nature Coast – with frost possible -- and the 40s closer to the Tampa area.

Winds shifting from the east will bring more moderate temperatures starting Wednesday, ahead of another front that will drop temperatures again next weekend.

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