Jeff Huffman

High pressure typically brings warm, dry and calm weather. But not when it is so strong, sitting to our north, and interacting with an area of lower pressure to the south.

The wind flow around both of these weather features will team up to deliver a strong onshore wind and some adverse conditions to Florida’s First Coast over the coming days, starting today and lingering through late Tuesday.


Hurricane Raymond has been upgraded to a Category 3 storm in the Pacific Ocean, as it moves slowly northward toward Mexico's southwest coast. Forecasters at the U.S. National Hurricane Center say it could gain more strength before it begins to weaken Tuesday.

Monday morning, the Hurricane Center said that Raymond had maximum sustained winds of 120 mph, with stronger gusts recorded. The storm is moving northward at a 2 mph pace from its current location about 165 miles west-southwest of Acapulco. It was some 100 miles from the coast.

Wilson Bilkovich / Flickr

Drivers in Jacksonville Beach continue to confront pools of standing water on the roads, and those headed to the beach should be aware of the dangers there.

Lt. Taylor Anderson with Jacksonville Beach Ocean Rescue says the beaches are open, but the bands of wind and rain coming ashore are creating very rough conditions.

“We do have an emergency crew standing by at Jacksonville Beach and we are manning the tower at the lifeguard station, watching for anybody who might go in the water,” he said.

Karen remnants dump rain from Georgia to Jax, closing arguments expected in Mathis trial, and the local effects of the government shutdown are in headlines this morning.

Jeff Huffman

Karen may no longer be a tropical storm threat for North Florida, but the remnant area of low pressure and approaching cold front are likely to soak the region through Tuesday.

A new storm is likely to form near the First Coast, keeping the weather less-than-ideal for outdoor activities there through mid-week.  Heavy rain and a few strong thunderstorms are likely for inland areas Monday, then heavy rain, gusty winds, and high surf are the primary concerns for beach-goers and coastal residents Monday night through Wednesday.

Rain from former Storm Karen expected this week, Jags go 0-5 for the first time, and Shad Khan's large donation to Rick Scott are in the headlines this morning.

Karen, once feared to hit the U.S. Gulf Coast as a hurricane, has stalled out and weakened into a tropical depression. The National Weather Service says the storm is "drifting" at 2 mph, moving toward Louisiana's southeastern edge. As of early Sunday morning, it was about 165 miles west-southwest of the mouth of the Mississippi River.

As Tropical Storm Karen strengthens on it's way towards the U.S. Gulf Coast, where it's expected to make landfall sometime this weekend, the Florida National Guard is recalling some personnel who were furloughed due to the federal government shutdown to plan for potential storm impacts.

Lt. Col. James Evans, director of public affairs for the Florida National Guard, said that of the state's approximately 2,000 full-time guardsmen about half are furloughed due to the shutdown.

Newly formed Tropical Storm Karen, which could reach hurricane strength by Friday, is expected to make landfall on the U.S. Gulf Coast sometime over the weekend.

The National Hurricane Center in Miami says the late-season storm formed Thursday morning about 485 miles south of the Mississippi Delta, with maximum sustained winds of 65 mph. It was moving north-northwest at 12 mph, but was expected to speed up.

Forecasters say it will make landfall in the U.S. either Saturday or Sunday.

Satellite data was impressive overnight, showing what appeared to be a healthy and strengthening tropical storm. But it wasn’t until this morning when NOAA hurricane hunter aircraft were able to confirm a well-defined low level circulation had formed on then-called Invest 97-L.

The season’s tenth named storm of the season, Tropical Storm Jerry, formed in the central Atlantic Monday morning. However, a weaker disturbance over the Caribbean is more worth Floridian’s attention. Keeping with trend for much of the 2013 Hurricane Season, though, development of this feature would likely be slow to occur or might not even happen at all. Nonetheless, the system’s close proximity to land and possible movement into the Gulf of Mexico increases the chances that it could impact portions of the United States or Florida over the weekend or early next week.

Authorities were saying early Friday that at least 97 people were known to have died in the flooding, mudslides and other deadly after-effects of the two storms that struck the country this week.

Torrential rains and then-Hurricane Manuel lashed the west coast of Mexico, particularly in around Acapulco. Hurricane Ingrid pummeled the east side of the nation, along the Gulf Coast.

Courtesy NOAA

The southern Gulf of Mexico and western Caribbean have already birthed several tropical systems this season, and we may have have another one by Friday. Invest 95L, an area of low pressure over the Yucatan Peninsula, has a “high chance” (per the National Hurricane Center) of becoming a depression or tropical storm by Friday when it moves out over the warm waters of the Bay of Campeche. Unlike its predecessors, though, this potential storm could be pulled further north or northeast and potentially impact parts of the United States.

We're at the height of the hurricane season and there are three named storms over the waters of the Gulf and Atlantic. However, as has been the case for most of the season, none of them are a threat to Florida. Ingrid is the newest arrival, forming Friday morning in the Bay of Campeche, likely to threaten Mexico and Texas over the weekend with heavy rains and flooding. Humberto was the season's first hurricane, but remains only a shipping interest in the eastern Atlantic.

The season's eighth named storm of the season formed overnight in the far eastern Atlantic. Tropical Storm Humberto (pronounced "oom-BAIR-toh") formed quickly from a strong tropical wave that moved off the west coast of Africa on Sunday.


The National Weather Service in Jacksonville has issued a Tornado Warning for northern St. Johns County and southeastern Duval County until 12:45 p.m. 

A Flash Flood Warning has also been issued until 2:15 p.m. for both counties.

At 12:09 p.m. National Weather Service Meteorologists were tracking a waterspout near south Ponte Vedra Beach moving west at 20 mph.

This waterspout has the potential to contact local land areas at any time. For that reason a tornado warning has been issued for the local area.

Good news to report on the tropics today, especially as it relates to Florida. Tropical Storm Erin was downgraded to a depression Friday morning, and the disturbance in the Gulf of Mexico, Invest 92L, is unlikely to impact the Sunshine State directly. It remains to be seen if Erin can survive the long haul across the cooler waters of the central Atlantic. However, the very warm water of the western Gulf of Mexico may still fuel tropical storm formation there over the weekend.


Tropical Storm Erin Forms In Eastern Atlantic

Aug 15, 2013

Tropical Storm Erin is likely to strengthen over the next day or so, but then potentially weaken as it traverses some cooler water and drier air over the central Atlantic. Similar to Tropical Storm Dorian, the system may even dissipate entirely by early next week when it moves through this more hostile environment. Regardless, it would take more than a week for Erin to move across the Atlantic and pose a real threat to any land areas.


WJCT First Read : Thursday, August 15, 2013

Aug 15, 2013

Welcome to WJCT First Read, your daily weekday morning round-up of stories from the First Coast, around Florida, and across the country. We'll also preview some of WJCT's upcoming news programming.

UF Health Northside hospital still planned: At yesterday's groundbreaking for UF Health Jacksonville's new Northside facility officials said they have re-filed a request for a certificate of need to build a new hospital at the location.

National Hurricane Center

Hurricane forecasts have become quite accurate in recent years. Not only can meteorologists predict where a storm is likely to make landfall, they also have a good idea about the areas that will be impacted by a storm surge. Unfortunately, they haven't been able to explain the storm surge danger in a way people easily understood. 

Happily, that’s about to change. 


Tropical Storm Andrea has made landfall and is expected to continue bringing heavy rain to the area through the evening and overnight.

Here is a briefing from the National Weather Service In Jacksonville on what to expect from Andrea. There are reports of some minor damage in Fernandina Beach and at Mayport Naval Station.

The following events have been canceled due to tropical storm Andrea:

National Weather Service

UPDATE 1:30PM: Jacksonville Mayor Alvin Brown spoke earlier about what people need to do to prepare for Tropical Storm Andrea.

Latest storm information (11:00 a.m.) puts the center of tropical storm Andrea about 225 miles southwest of Jacksonville, FL (Latitude 28.2N, Longitude 84.3W). 

Andrea has maximum sustained winds of 60 mph. 

The storm is expected to track northeast over far northern Florida and southeastern Georgia through tonight.

The most significant threat is for heavy rainfall and associated flooding.

National Weather Service

A tropical storm warning and a flood watch remain in effect for the First Coast.

The National Weather Service calls for between 4 to possibly 10 inches of rain from Tropical Storm Andrea as the storm makes its way across Northeast Florida.

Wind gusts of 35 to 45 mph are also expected.

There's also a threat of tornadoes. 

JEA is closely monitoring Tropical Storm Andrea.  The utility reports it's got a full compliment of electric, water and sewer crews to restore service in case of outages.

National Weather Service

A tropical storm warning is in effect as Andrea makes its way toward the First Coast.

Andrea's maximum sustained winds increased to near 60 mph early this morning.

This storm system is expected to dump as much as 6-inches of rain on Northeast Florida.

Winds are also expected to pick up across the First Coast as heavier bands of showers move through the area.

Forecasters say wind gusts of 35-to-45 miles per hour are possible.

Storm tides are expected to be 1-to-2 feet above normal.

Clay County Under A State Of Emergency

May 4, 2013

Clay County remains under a declared Local State of Emergency as a result of continued flooding of homes and roadways in the county. This information comes directly from Clay County Emergency Management Officials:

Damage Assessment:

Damage assessment teams will conduct assessments of homes in affected areas beginning Monday morning. Residents are encouraged to contact the Emergency Management Office (904) 284-7703, to ensure their damage is included in the complete assessment report following this event.


Current Duval County Road Closures

May 4, 2013

The City of Jacksonville has released this list of road closures as of 10:00 pm, Saturday May 4.

Cyd Hoskinson / WJCT

Forecasters say weather conditions on the First Coast will gradually improve over the weekend.

The chance of rain is expected to drop from 60% Saturday to around 20% Sunday.

Heavy rains and flooding have forced many outdoor events in Jacksonville this weekend to move indoors or to change the date all together.

Cyd Hoskinson / WJCT

 The World of Nations at Metropolitan Park was a veritable sea of mud and umbrellas on its opening day today.

The National Weather Service has issued a flood watch for portions of Northeast Florida and Southeast Georgia through Saturday morning.

Meteorologist Marie Trabert says low pressure systems to the west and the south are responsible for the bands of heavy rain that could dump as much as four inches of rain on the First Coast.