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National Weather Service

Forecaster says budget cuts could hurt hurricane predictions

in 2017/Top Headlines by

Recent progress in forecasting the intensity of hurricanes — which has lagged behind storm track forecasting — could be undermined by proposed cuts in federal funding for tropical weather research, says the retiring chief of a team of U.S. hurricane specialists. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration launched the Hurricane Forecast Improvement Program in 2009 with a $13 million budget. Funding has shrunk to less than half that, and President Donald Trump’s proposed budget includes further cuts to NOAA and…

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Florida Ag commissioner: ‘No end in sight’ for wildfires

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Three schools canceled classes due to smoky conditions from a nearby wildfire as Florida’s agriculture commissioner said the state is in the “midst of its worst wildfire season in years – with no end in sight.” Commissioner Adam Putnam said in a news release that nearly 125 active wildfires were burning Monday morning. Officials in Pasco County near Tampa, on Florida’s Gulf Coast, called off classes Monday at an elementary, a middle and a high school near fire that burned…

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Charlie Crist named to influential House Science, Space committee; hires 2 constituent staffers

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

Charlie Crist announced Tuesday he would be serving on the influential House Committee on Science, Space and Technology. Also, the first-year Democratic congressman from St. Petersburg hired two new constituent service representatives — Michael Batista and Dillion Stafford — who will help assist Crist’s constituents of Florida’s 13th Congressional District. Since Crist was recently named to the House Committee on Financial Services, which is considered an exclusive committee, he required a waiver from the Democratic Caucus to serve on multiple…

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Hurricanes leave Florida coasts vulnerable to ‘King tides’

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Flood warnings have been issued for parts of Florida’s Atlantic coast experiencing annual “King tides.” The National Weather Service says flooding is expected along the St. Johns River and South Florida’s coastline through Friday. King tides bring the year’s highest tides each fall. Scientists say they’re inching higher because of rising sea levels. According to the Miami Herald offshore winds from Hurricane Nicole are causing waters to flood some low-lying areas more than expected. TCPalm.com reports beaches with significant erosion and damage…

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As Democratic convention nears, excessive heat settles in

in 2017 by

As thousands of delegates arrive in Philadelphia for the Democratic National Convention, it’s not just politics they have to contend with — it’s also the hot and sticky weather. The heat wave that descended on the city is expected show no mercy on Sunday with temperatures around 96 degrees. It could peak on Monday, the convention’s first day, with temperatures possibly hitting 100 degrees, said Mitchell Gaines, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Mount Holly, New Jersey. Many…

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Florida gets more rain as Tropical Storm Colin heads east

in Statewide/Top Headlines by

Tropical Storm Colin was expected to continue dropping heavy rains over the Southeast on Tuesday after moving across northern Florida, knocking out power and flooding roads. Florida Gov. Rick Scott declared a state of emergency as the storm churned its way across the state into southeast Georgia, and The National Hurricane Center said Colin marked the earliest that a third named storm has ever formed in the Atlantic basin. By 8 a.m. EDT Tuesday, the storm was moving into the…

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1,700 lightning strikes hit Palm Beach County on Tuesday

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The National Weather Service says 1,700 lightning bolts crashed from the skies during a two-hour period as storms moved across Palm Beach County. Meteorologist Robert Molleda tells The Palm Beach Post Tuesday’s lightning show was of a magnitude seen only a few times annually. During the durations of Tuesday’s storms, about 2,500 lightning strikes were measured in the county. A lightning strike knocked three Boca Raton firefighters off their feet as they put out a backyard fire that had been ignited…

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