Forecast: Palm Beach County lows to linger in the 40s again tonight


Highlights

Today’s high is 71 degrees, low 48.

Wind gusts today could be up to 24 miles per hour.

No rain in Palm Beach County’s forecast until Friday.

third night of cold conditions, blamed for some minor crop damage this past weekend, was set for Monday night and into today, with a chance of frost southwest of Lake Okeechobee, the National Weather Service’s Miami office said Monday.

Conditions should moderate later this week, although overnight lows will still get into the 40s in the Glades, the weather service said.

A second cold front will arrive Friday, but the forecasts show limited impact, with overnight lows only in the 50s and highs climbing into the upper 70s by this weekend.

“It’s just a little bit of cool and dry air coming. It’s not going to be as cold as this previous front that we just had,” forecaster Maria Torres said Monday morning from the weather office west of Miami.

Monday’s high, as recorded at Palm Beach International Airport, reached 65, well below the average of 77 for Dec. 11 as well as the record of 86 set in 2012. The overnight low into Tuesday was expected to hit 42; the average is 61 and the record is 34, set in 1962.

The high Sunday at PBIA reached 62; the record high was 87, set in 2009. The average for Dec. 10 is 77 and this past year’s high was 72. Sunday’s low was 44; the record was 33, set in 1917. The average low is 61 and this past year’s was 62.

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Glades and Hendry counties were under a frost advisory overnight into Monday. The overnight low into Tuesday could drop as low as 40 around Lake Okeechobee, the weather service forecast said.

Cold weather also historically means dry weather, and the combination raises fire concerns this time of the year. But records show 3.32 inches of rain has fallen since Nov. 1, compared to an average of 2.92, meaning the ground and vegetation still contain some moisture.

And while fewer people are braving the water this week, those who do venture in need to watch for stronger-than-usual rip currents because of the increased winds and waves. And boating likely won’t be fun or safe, the weather service said.

Check The Palm Beach Post radar map.

Farm managers reported some damage during the weekend.

“We are still assessing some of the damage but yes, we are going to have some freeze damage. We had 30-degree temperatures in several locations this morning,” John S. Hundley, vice president of Hundley Farms, east of Belle Glade, said Monday. He said green bean crops in western Palm Beach County are especially vulnerable.

U.S. Sugar Corp. reported no damage to sugar cane and minimal damage to the company’s sweet-corn crop, spokeswoman Judy Sanchez said from Clewiston. She said the company’s fields experienced a low of 30.5 and scattered frost early Sunday, the coldest morning.

“We had close to freezing temperatures in our citrus groves, with scattered ground frost in colder areas but no frost on the citrus trees,” Sanchez said. “This type of cold event actually helps the trees to slow down, and set up a good bloom for the spring. We just do not need a heat wave, with temperatures in the upper ‘80s over the next couple of weeks. That would cause them to start flushing.”

Barbara Miedema, spokeswoman for the Sugar Cane Growers Cooperative of Florida in Belle Glade, said the lowest temperature recorded in their fields was 42.

Staff writer Susan Salisbury contributed to this story.



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