UPDATE: More rain on the way for PBC; flood watch into Saturday night

Clouds move in over Palm Beach and the Palm Harbor Marina in West Palm Beach at midday Friday, August 25, 2017. (Lannis Waters / The Palm Beach Post)

UPDATE, 8:45 p.m. Forecasters at the National Weather Service expect more rain across parts of Palm Beach County over the next few hours as an area of bad weather moves in from the south.

While rain won’t be constant in the next 24 hours, a flood watch remains in effect until 8 p.m. Saturday as areas of rain could drop a couple of inches of rain locally in a short time that could cause minor flooding in some areas.

As of 8 p.m. today, 0.24 inches of rain fell Friday at Palm Beach International Airport, according to the NWS Miami office.

UPDATE, 3:55 p.m.: The National Weather Service has extended its  flood watch for Palm Beach County through 8 p.m. Saturday. The watch originally had been set to run through Saturday morning.

UPDATE, 1:30pm: As promised, heavy rains finally began falling around midday. Boy, did they.

In a 2-hour stretch, starting around 11:30 a.m. areas from Boynton Beach south, and especially the Boca Raton area, saw 1 to 3 inches of rain, forecaster Larry Kelly said from the National Weather Service’s Miami office.

“The strongest stuff has pushed offshore,” Kelly said. “It’s also possible another band could develop behind it as well. Rainfall amounts can add uppretty quickly.”

He also warned that such heavy rains in such a brief time often lead to dangerous street flooding.


UPDATE 10am All that rain that was supposed to fall on Palm Beach County the past few days? It’s been falling, forecasters said; just not up here. And it will. Probably by this afternoon.

“The heaviest rain has just missed you guys,” Steven Ippoliti, meteorologist for the National Weather Service’s Miami office, said Friday morning.

“Palm Beach (County) has been lucky enough that the bands have moved quickly enough that they haven’t been an issue, or they have stayed off shore,” Ippoliti said. He said parts of Broward County have seen street flooding and the Naples area has been hit with flash floods that stranded vehicles.

Palm Beach County can expect heavy rains starting Friday afternoon and into Saturday, Ippoliti said. He said that tropical blob that’s been meandering over the Florida peninsula now is centered over Tampa, and a line of showers and thunderstorms was swinging around Friday morning and moving into southwest Palm Beach County.

He also said it’s possible rain bands will stall over the area and bring lengthy rain events.

UPDATE 8:45 am:

A flood watch remained in place Friday morning, and was set to stay in effect through Saturday morning, for Palm Beach County and the rest of South Florida, as a days-long rain event was expected to linger into the weekend.


“Scattered to numerous thunderstorms will be possible across all of South Florida. The primary threat from thunderstorms will be lightning and urban flooding,” the National Weather Service’s Miami office said Friday morning in an advisory. “The periods of rain and thunderstorms are expected to continue through the weekend.”

The advisory said some areas might get 2 to 4 inches with other areas perhaps getting even more. It said some locations could experience to 2 to 4 inches.

It said the heavy rain will bring flooding, in some case heavy, which could block roadways and inundate areas that are low-lying or have poor drainage.

They haven’t happened yet, but rains starting soon for South Florida; Harvey reforms as depression

UPDATE 11am:

Harvey has reformed as a tropical depression, the National Hurricane Center said.

A hurricane watch and storm surge watch were issued for parts of the Texas coast and a tropical storm watch for other parts of that state as well as the northeast coast of Mexico, an 11 a.m. advisory said. It said watches could be posted Wednesday afternoon for parts of coastal southwestern Louisiana.

At 11 a.m., the storm was about 470 miles southeast of Port Mansfield, Texas. It was moving northeast at 9 mph. Top sustained winds were at 35 mph, just 2 mph below the threshold to again make it Tropical Storm Harvey.

Harvey was expected to produce rains totaling 10 to 15 inches — 20 inches in parts of Texas and Louisiana — as early as Friday morning.



It was delayed by a day or so, but that heavy rain event is coming this afternoon, the National Weather Service says.

The tropical blob that’s been hovering off the South Florida coast was supposed bring rains of 3 inches or more, starting Tuesday morning. That didn’t happen yet, but “the trough is finally here,’ meteorologist Larry Kelly said Wednesday morning from the National Weather Service’s Miami office.

“It was a little delayed but the trough is now draped across the peninsula this morning so we’ll begin to see that wetter weather,” Kelly said. He said rains should start in earnest Wednesday afternoon and into Thursday and Friday, and forecasters are still calling for those 3-plus inches, with local flooding in the places where that tends to happen.

The National Hurricane Center’s 8 a.m. Tropical Weather Outlook said any development of that system will be “slow to occur” and it has a bout a 30 percent chance of becoming a tropical depression, or a Tropical Storm Irma. by this weekend, as it makes a turn to the northeast and back out to the open sea.

As to why the rains didn’t start right, Kelly cited “just timing. It’s a complex science.”

The hurricane center also said the remnants of Tropical Storm Harvey are close to reforming into a tropical depression over the southwestern Gulf of Mexico about 150 miles west of Merida, Mexico, and advisories could start as early as 10 a.m. Wednesday. The outlook said the system could reach the northwestern Gulf Coast late Friday, then slow down, increasing the threat of heavy and long-lasting rains next week cross Louisiana and Texas and the northeast coast of Mexico.





Forecasters: Wave likely won’t hit South Florida as a tropical system, but heavy rains, flooding likely

UPDATE 2 pm:

The development of the system hovering off South Florida “should be slow to occur” as it moves towards Florida, the National Hurricane Center said in its 2 p.m. Tropical Weather Outlook. It said the system has only a 30 percent chance of developing into a tropical depression, or Tropical Storm Irma, in the next few days, and by then it is expected to have turned to the northeast. But, the update said, “Regardless of development, very heavy rain and flooding is possible over portions of the Florida peninsula during the next few days.”

The Outlook also said the remnants of Tropical Storm Harvey had become better defined and it’s expected to reform into a tropical depression over the southwestern Gulf of Mexico on Wednesday or Thursday, and move in the general direction of the Texas coast on Friday. It was expected to bring storm surge and tropical storm or hurricane force winds along portions of the Texas coast, and very heavy rainfall across portions of central and eastern Texas. It had a 90 percent chance of forming by midday Thursday.


UPDATE 11am:

While instances of heavy rain still are possible across Palm Beach County today, it now appears the heaviest rainfall will be Thursday, the National Weather Service’s Miami office said.

” Today and Wednesday will have the chance for some heavy rainfall from showers and thunderstorms, but we will see the pattern becoming more favorable starting on Thursday and Friday for excessive rainfall amounts over portions of South Florida, lead meteorologist Robert Garcia said in a midday update.



Wondering during your morning commute where all the rain is that forecasters predicted would drench Palm Beach County this morning? Just wait.

The county saw scattered light showers during rush hour, but by later in the morning, and around the lunch hour, “things should start to kick off,” forecaster Chuck Caracozza said from the National Weather Service’s Miami office.

Most parts of South Florida can expect to see 2 to 4 inches of rain this week, with heavier amounts in some places.

Caracozza also warned areas of the county that are prone to street flooding;  parts of Boca Raton, Boynton Beach and The Acreage know who they are.

The National Hurricane Center’s  8 a.m.  Tropical Weather Outlook gave only a 30 percent chance the system will become a tropical depression or Tropical Storm Irma in the next five days.


Showers, wind, waterspouts, how long “gloomy” weather will last

The National Weather Service in Miami is forecasting “rather gloomy” weather for most of Wednesday as scattered showers stream in from the east.

While up to a half-inch of rain is possible in isolated areas where rain bands stall, forecasters don’t expect widespread accumulation, which would help alleviate the parched conditions in Palm Beach County.

Check The Palm Beach Post radar map.

In fact, showers are expected to concentrate over Miami-Dade County to Fort Lauderdale with less rain falling to the north.

Download the Palm Beach Post WeatherPlus app here.

“Rainfall amounts not expected to be very high due to the quick-moving nature of the showers, but would’n’t be surprised to see isolated amounts over a half-inch where concentrated bands set up,” forecasters wrote this morning.

Related: Wildfires trigger state of emergency in Florida 

A high risk of rip currents continues today along the Atlantic beaches with east winds sustained at 17 mph and gusts as high as 24 mph.

Related: Teen saved from rip current on Palm Beach as high risk continues

That breeziness will increase the chances for waterspouts along cloud lines in the Atlantic and Biscayne Bay, forecasters note.

But the gloomy weather won’t last long. The showers will move into the eastern Gulf of Mexico tonight, with gradual drying overnight.

Things should dry out Thursday and Friday, although breezy conditions will continue with temperatures close to what’s expected in April – highs near 80 degrees and overnight lows in the mid-60s.


Up to a half-inch of rain in southeast Florida today where rain bands concentrate.

How much water (and money) should pools lose to evaporation?

It’s not just lawns thirsty for rain in parched Palm Beach County.

Pools are guzzling water too as owners turn on the hose to keep up with what’s sacrificed to the sun.

Up to a quarter-inch of pool water can evaporate per day depending on variables such as shade, wind and swimmer activity, i.e. splashing, cannonballs.

With below-normal rainfall this month, and little in the forecast, pool refills from Mother Nature must be supplemented or pool pumps will start sucking air.

Tim Woodward, senior director of operations for pool leak detection and repair company Red Rhino, said business people may blame the extra pool refills on a leak, when it’s really evaporation.

To determine if your pool is leaking, place a bucket of water on the first step of your pool and after a week, compare the amount of water lost in the pool with the bucket. If it is the same, it shows the water is evaporating and there is no leak.
To determine if your pool is leaking, place a bucket of water on the first step of your pool and after a week, compare the amount of water lost in the pool with the bucket. If it is the same, it shows the water is evaporating and there is no leak.

Download the Palm Beach Post WeatherPlus app here.

Evaporation can be a drain on the wallet. For a pool sized 14 feet by 28 feet, losing a quarter inch of water per day amounts to about 61 gallons daily.

Robert Nelton, spokesman for the Palm Beach County Water Department, did the math on how much 61 gallons per day would add to the monthly bill — about $18.

But for a large pool that is 20 x 40 feet, it’s up to $33.50 per month with 125 gallons lost daily.

To ensure the pool is just suffering evaporation and not a leak, Woodward and Susan Eldred, co-owner of Pinch-A-Penny pool store in Palm Beach Gardens, said owners should conduct a bucket test.

Check The Palm Beach Post radar map.

061415 RES Corcoran pool

Basically, fill a bucket with water, set it on the first step of the pool, and measure the distance between the lip of the bucket and the water level. Do the same with the pool. The water should evaporate about equally in each.

If the pool water is much lower than the water in the bucket after a few days, there may be a leak.

“If the bucket water is lower, the dog’s been drinking out of the bucket,” Eldred said with a laugh.

While there is no discussion of water restrictions, even during the worst of Palm Beach County’s dry spells, pool refills were still allowed. But anyone emptying a pool had to do so onto a lawn or unpaved surface.

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