Severe Weather Blog

Manatee, rest of Gulf Coast under tropical storm watch

A tropical storm watch has been issued for the Florida Gulf Coast, including Manatee County, according to the National Weather Service.

In a Hurricane Matthew advisory, the Weather Service specified that the watch runs from north of Chokoloskee in Collier County to the Suwannee River in North Florida.

“We expect the windiest conditions to be tomorrow night into early Friday,” Bay News 9 meteorologist Mike Clay said Wednesday. “This is not a big rain event.”

The chances of rain for Manatee and Sarasota counties will be about 50 percent Thursday night and Friday, Clay added.

That number will dip down to 20 percent by Saturday, according to the meteorologist.

“Temperatures, we’ll have highs in the upper 80s and lows in the mid 70s,” Clay said. “This is mainly an East Coast event, but out in our waters, the winds could be tropical-storm force. On land, it should be kind of windy but it shouldn’t be enough to cause major problems.”

A hurricane watch has also been extended northward from Fernandina Beach north of Jacksonville to the Savannah River on the Atlantic coast, according to the advisory.

Amaris Castillo: 941-745-7051, @AmarisCastillo