Update 5:59 p.m.: The severe thunderstorm warning over central Palm Beach County has expired, but winds are still being measured at 40 mph over the area.
Forecasters are watching a line moving southeast across far North Broward County and Southern Palm Beach County.
Update 5:47 p.m.: Winds up to 65 mph are being measured southeast of Belle Glade as a strong thunderstorm nears Six Mile Bend.
Update 5:34 p.m.: Thunderstorms over Belle Glade are moving east at 30 mph, triggering a warning from the National Weather Service for central Palm Beach County.
Areas affected include Wellington, Belle Glade and Lion Country Safari.
The warning is in effect until 6 p.m.
Update 5:09 p.m.: A severe thunderstorm warning has been issued for western Palm Beach County.
A strong thunderstorm is near Clewiston moving east at 20 mph.
Forecasters said the storm’s biggest hazards are 60 mph winds, hail and frequent lightning.
The warning is in effect until 6 p.m.
Update 5:06 p.m.: A long line of thunderstorms stretching from near Clewiston to the Miccosukee Indian Reservation moving east at 10 mph.
Update 4:32 p.m.: Storms are approaching northeast Palm Beach County are producing winds as high as 50 mph.
It’s unclear whether these storms will reach east of I-95, but are expected to hit the Acreage and areas west of the interstate.
Update 4:22 p.m.: Mariners on Lake Okeechobee are being warned of strong thunderstorms approaching the area from the west.
Forecasters in Miami have issued a special marine warning until 6:15.
Areas in North Florida are getting hit already by a cluster of thunderstorms that moved in off the Gulf.
Update 4:14 p.m.: A significant weather advisory has been issued for inland and coastal Palm Beach County.
A strong line of thunderstorms extends south from Hobe Sound while another system is moving east south of Lake Okeechobee.
The advisory is in effect until 5 p.m.
Forecasters are warning of frequent lightning, nickel-size hail and winds up to 55 mph. Torrential downpours are also possible with these storms.
Update: 3:54 p.m. A line of strong thunderstorms approaching Lake Okeechobee has triggered a precautionary marine weather statement from the National Weather Service in Miami.
Doppler radar is showing winds up to 37 mph and storms with heavy downpours, gusty winds and possible hail. Frequent lightning is also a concern as the storms last into the evening hours.
Storms are already erupting to the north of Palm Beach County.
Complicating today’s forecast is a cluster of thunderstorms over the northeastern Gulf of Mexico and the Florida Panhandle combine with afternoon heating.
“Our atmosphere features plenty of moisture and available instability for diurnally induced convection to access,” Miami forecasters wrote.
Then there’s a gust front from a previous storm cluster that pushed through northern Florida earlier today. That will focus showers over inland South Florida moving east.
Previous story: The National Weather Service in Miami is expecting strong to severe thunderstorms throughout South Florida late this afternoon through evening.
While many of the storms will be focused inland and around Lake Okeechobee, forecasters said coastal areas should also be prepared for some of the stronger storms to bring wind gusts upwards of 60 mph, frequent lightning and localized street flooding.
The Storm Prediction Center has South Florida in a marginal risk for severe weather, with a 5 percent chance of damaging winds, mostly from thunderstorm downbursts. The chance of tornadoes is low, but Palm Beach County was put into the slight category for potential flooding. Slight is the second tier on a five-level weather threat scale.
Storms are expected to erupt as daytime highs near 90 degrees and sea breezes kick up. Showers may taper off after sunset, but forecasters note a cluster of thunderstorms moving east from the Gulf of Mexico could also affect South Florida through the evening.
An estimated 3 to 4 inches of rain fell across parts of Palm Beach County Thursday, the National Weather Service said.
The heaviest rainfall was near Jupiter and Lake Okeechobee in Pahokee and South Bay, according to meteorologists.
At Palm Beach International Airport, less than an inch of rainfall had been recorded as of Thursday night, the weather service said.