SARASOTA, Fla. (WWSB) - A FLOOD WATCH is in effect for the Suncoast into Friday and may be extended into the weekend. Two important characteristics of the atmosphere will be very important over the next few days. First is the very high moisture content of the air and the other is continuation of the west wind. The atmosphere has near record amounts of water vapor and this will bring the potential of heavy rain and very muggy afternoons. The "feels like" temperature will be very high and with an air temperature near 90 the "feels like" heat index will be in the 103 to 106 range or even higher. Aside from the uncomfortable, even dangerous high humidity, the moisture will bring heavy rain that could lead to additional street flooding and standing water in poor drainage areas. The west wind will continue to pump Gulf moisture into the area and bring several more days of rains.
By early next week a shift in the high pressure area to our south, which is bringing us the west wind pattern, will shift and winds will return to the southeast. As the high build across the Atlantic some dry air will move in and reduce the heavy rain potential by Monday or Tuesday. We will also see the return of sunny skies and higher daytime temperatures.