Saffron Restaurants reservation Tampa Bay, central Florida, is at risk for tornadoes as storms approach

Tampa Bay, central Florida, is at risk for tornadoes as storms approach


Tampa Bay meteorologists say there is a risk of tornadoes Wednesday morning as a cold front brings stormy weather through the center of the state.

The National Weather Service has issued a tornado warning for much of central Florida until 11 a.m., meaning conditions are ripe for tornado formation.

Ross Giarratana, a meteorologist with the agency’s Tampa Bay office, said the purpose of the watch is to give people enough time to be prepared for possible severe weather.

‘We watch the radar all day long. We have additional staff here monitoring the storms as they move through the area,” he said. “We will be closely monitoring the potential for strong winds and some rotation within the storms that could lead to potential tornadoes.”

Wind speeds between 25 and 30 km/h are forecast, but the storms could bring gusts of 120 km/h, according to the weather service.

The Tampa Bay area is at low risk for severe weather brought on by a cold front moving south through the state and expected to produce scattered, isolated storms.

This means that one neighborhood could receive half an inch of rain, while another nearby neighborhood could be repeatedly hit by multiple thunderstorms.

“There is definitely a good amount of moisture in the atmosphere and there is a chance that these storms will move over the same locations multiple times,” Giarratana said.

More than 3 inches of rain in some areas cannot be ruled out, he added. Frequently flooded neighborhoods and urban areas with poor drainage may experience minimal flooding.

Skies are expected to clear after 4 p.m. as high temperatures return, Giarratana said.

“After that, drier air will start to move in from the north, and that should end the risk of storms at that point,” he said.