MANATEE-Tampa Bay — A strong thunderstorm moved into Manatee County and through north Hillsborough and southeast Pasco counties Monday evening, bringing small hail and knocking down at least some tree branches.
It was the second consecutive day in which the area received a preview of the summer storm season. Sunday's storms were more severe and widespread.
On Monday, most of the hail reported was concentrated in the Carrollwood area of north Tampa.
"We call this Florida hail," Bay News 9 Chief Meteorologist Mike Clay said. "About the time it melts is about the time it hits the pavement. It's not like the hail you might find in the Plains that destroys automobiles. But certainly, some of it was penny-sized around Hillsborough County."
Slowly but surely, a summertime weather pattern in settling in around west-central Florida. That means hot and humid days with scattered and showers and thunderstorms in the late afternoon and evenings.
The pattern was in place through most of the Memorial Day weekend and will continue into the work week. "An easterly flow is going to continue," Clay said. "It will collide with the late-day sea breeze and trigger showers and thunderstorms on our west coast. So the mornings will be dry, maybe a shower on the east coast, and then the afternoons will be active."
Wednesday, Thursday and Friday could be particularly active.
"Tomorrow will be a 20- to 30-percent type of day with coverage of showers and thunderstorms, but on Wednesday and Thursday, I think there will be more moisture and better upper-level dynamics, and the rain chances will go up," Clay said.
The Bay News 9 weather team puts the rain chances at 40 percent Wednesday, Thursday and Friday and 30 percent Saturday and Sunday.