East Central Florida Operational Lightning Threat Graphics

Current operational Lightning Threat graphics for East Central Florida are available from NWS Melbourne's graphical Hazardous Weather Outlook.

These Lightning Threat Graphics were developed from a 16 year climatology (1989-2004) of cloud to ground lightning density and frequency data based on seven low-level wind flow regimes during the Florida warm season (May-Sep.).  The flash density and flash frequency data were incorporated into climatological lightning 'first guess' lightning threat fields for each defined low level wind regime. National Weather Service meteorologists use these lightning threat fields as a starting point to produce a daily lightning threat map for East Central Florida during the warm season. High resolution local mesoscale models depicting thermodynamic parameters and showing explicit movement of sea breeze boundaries will further enable forecasters to refine the lightning threat.

Click here to see the current operational Lightning Threat Forecast for Today and Tonight.    

The climatological Lightning Threat for each wind flow regime is shown below, along with frequency and flash density grids that were incorporated to develop the Lightning Threat.  These Lightning Threat graphics are purely based on the climatologies for each regime but can provide useful information on the amount and spatial distribution of cloud to ground lightning strikes.

Today's Lightning Threat

NWS Melbourne would like to acknowledge: the Applied Meterorology Unit (AMU) which was tasked with producing specific flash frequency and flash density climatological data files, and NWS Tallahassee and Florida State University which shared data needed to complete the generation of the lightning climatologies. Prior work investigating Florida lightning climatologies by Lericos, et al, Stroupe, and Hodanish, Sharp, et al are also acknowledged.   

Shortcut to Regimes: (mouse over for text descriptions)

 
Ridge North of Florida
Ridge between Tampa and Jacksonville
Ridge between Tampa and Miami Ridge South of Florida Peninsula Northwest Flow Peninsula Northeast Flow Ridge over Florida Panhandle

Regime: Ridge North of Florida

This flow regime is characterized by easterly to east-southeast flow in the 1000-700mb layer across East Central Florida. The threat for lightning activity is maximized along the Florida west coast in the mid to late afternoon and early evening.

 

Climo Lightning Threat 2pm to 8pm
The Climatological Lightning Threat from 2 pm to 8 pm is shown based on lightning probability and strike density. The images to the left of the lightning threat show climatological lightning probability (top row) and climatological strike density per flow regime day (bottom row) in 6 hour intervals. The images from left to right are valid: 8am to 2pm, 2pm to 8pm, 8pm to 2am, and 2am to 8am.


Regime: Ridge North of Florida

Climatological Lightning Probability
(click the maps for a larger size)

Climo Lightning Probability 8am to 2pm
8am to 2pm
Climo Lightning Probability 2pm to 8pm
2pm to 8pm
Climo Lightning Probability 8pm to 2am
8pm to 2am
Climo Lightning Probability 2am to 8am
2am to 8am


Regime: Ridge North of Florida

Climatological Lightning Density (click the maps for a larger size)

Climo Lightning Density 8am to 2pm
8am to 2pm

Climo Lightning Density 2pm to 8pm
2pm to 8pm

Climo Lightning Density 8pm to 2am
8pm to 2am
Climo Lightning Density 2am to 8am
2am to 8am

Regime: Ridge between Tampa and Jacksonville

This flow regime is characterized by east to southeast low level flow across the southern peninsula with lighter flow across northern peninsula near the ridge axis between Tampa and Jacksonville.

 

The Climatological Lightning Threat from 2 pm to 8 pm is shown based on lightning probability and strike density. The images to the left of the lightning threat show climatological lightning probability (top row) and climatological strike density per flow regime day (bottom row) in 6 hour intervals. The images from left to right are valid: 8am to 2pm, 2pm to 8pm, 8pm to 2am, and 2am to 8am.
Regime: Ridge between Tampa and Jacksonville
Climatological Lightning Probability
(click the maps for a larger size)
Climo Lightning Probability 8am to 2pm
8am to 2pm
Climo Lightning Probability 2pm to 8pm
2pm to 8pm
Climo Lightning Probability 8pm to 2am
8pm to 2am
Climo Lightning Probability 2am to 8am
2am to 8am


Regime: Ridge between Tampa and Jacksonville

Climatological Lightning Density
(click the maps for a larger size)

Climo Lightning Density 8am to 2pm
8am to 2pm

Climo Lightning Density 2pm to 8pm
2pm to 8pm

Climo Lightning Density 8pm to 2am
8pm to 2am
Climo Lightning Density 2am to 8am
2am to 8am

Regime: Ridge between Tampa and Miami

This flow regime is characterized by low level southwest flow across much of East Central Florida. Lightning Threat is maximized across much of East Central Florida in the afternoon and evening.

 

Climo Lightning Threat 2pm to 8pm
The Climatological Lightning Threat from 2 pm to 8 pm is shown based on lightning probability and strike density. The images to the left of the lightning threat show climatological lightning probability (top row) and climatological strike density per flow regime day (bottom row) in 6 hour intervals. The images from left to right are valid: 8am to 2pm, 2pm to 8pm, 8pm to 2am, and 2am to 8am.

Regime: Ridge between Tampa and Miami

Climatological Lightning Probability
(click the maps for a larger size)
Climo Lightning Probability 8am to 2pm
8am to 2pm
Climo Lightning Probability 2pm to 8pm
2pm to 8pm
Climo Lightning Probability 8pm to 2am
8pm to 2am
Climo Lightning Probability 2am to 8am
2am to 8am


Regime: Ridge between Tampa and Miami

Climatological Lightning Density
(click the maps for a larger size)

Climo Lightning Density 8am to 2pm
8am to 2pm

Climo Lightning Density 2pm to 8pm
2pm to 8pm

Climo Lightning Density 8pm to 2am
8pm to 2am
Climo Lightning Density 2am to 8am
2am to 8am

Regime: Ridge South of Florida

This flow regime is characterized by westerly flow across the Florida peninsula. Lightning Threat is typically maximized in the late afternoon and early evening across the coastal counties along the east coast.

 

Climo Lightning Threat 2pm to 8pm
The Climatological Lightning Threat from 2 pm to 8 pm is shown based on lightning probability and strike density. The images to the left of the lightning threat show climatological lightning probability (top row) and climatological strike density per flow regime day (bottom row) in 6 hour intervals. The images from left to right are valid: 8am to 2pm, 2pm to 8pm, 8pm to 2am, and 2am to 8am.

Regime:
Ridge South of Florida
Climatological Lightning Probability
(click the maps for a larger size)
Climo Lightning Probability 8am to 2pm
8am to 2pm
Climo Lightning Probability 2pm to 8pm
2pm to 8pm
Climo Lightning Probability 8pm to 2am
8pm to 2am
Climo Lightning Probability 2am to 8am
2am to 8am


Regime:
Ridge South of Florida
Climatological Lightning Density (click the maps for a larger size)

Climo Lightning Density 8am to 2pm
8am to 2pm

Climo Lightning Density 2pm to 8pm
2pm to 8pm

Climo Lightning Density 8pm to 2am
8pm to 2am
Climo Lightning Density 2am to 8am
2am to 8am

Regime: Peninsula Northwest Flow

This flow regime is characterized by afternoon lightning activity concentrated across the eastern side of the Florida peninsula.

 

Climo Lightning Threat 2pm to 8pm

The Climatological Lightning Threat from 2 pm to 8 pm is shown based on lightning probability and strike density. The images to the left of the lightning threat show climatological lightning probability (top row) and climatological strike density per flow regime day (bottom row) in 6 hour intervals. The images from left to right are valid: 8am to 2pm, 2pm to 8pm, 8pm to 2am, and 2am to 8am.

Regime: Peninsula Northwest Flow
Climatological Lightning Probability
(click the maps for a larger size)
Climo Lightning Probability 8am to 2pm
8am to 2pm
Climo Lightning Probability 2pm to 8pm
2pm to 8pm
Climo Lightning Probability 8pm to 2am
8pm to 2am
Climo Lightning Probability 2am to 8am
2am to 8am


Regime: Peninsula Northwest Flow

Climatological Lightning Density (click the maps for a larger size)

Climo Lightning Density 8am to 2pm
8am to 2pm

Climo Lightning Density 2pm to 8pm
2pm to 8pm

Climo Lightning Density 8pm to 2am
8pm to 2am
Climo Lightning Density 2am to 8am
2am to 8am

Regime: Peninsula Northeast Flow

This flow regime is noted for the least amount of lightning activity over the Florida Peninsula. During the late afternoon and evening hours the threat for lightning is typically limited to Southwest Florida.

 

Climo Lightning Threat 2pm to 8pm
The Climatological Lightning Threat from 2 pm to 8 pm is shown based on lightning probability and strike density. The images to the left of the lightning threat show climatological lightning probability (top row) and climatological strike density per flow regime day (bottom row) in 6 hour intervals. The images from left to right are valid: 8am to 2pm, 2pm to 8pm, 8pm to 2am, and 2am to 8am.
Regime: Peninsula Northeast Flow
Climatological Lightning Probability
(click the maps for a larger size)
Climo Lightning Probability 8am to 2pm
8am to 2pm
Climo Lightning Probability 2pm to 8pm
2pm to 8pm
Climo Lightning Probability 8pm to 2am
8pm to 2am
Climo Lightning Probability 2am to 8am
2am to 8am


Regime: Peninsula Northeast Flow

Climatological Lightning Density (click the maps for a larger size)

Climo Lightning Density 8am to 2pm
8am to 2pm

Climo Lightning Density 2pm to 8pm
2pm to 8pm

Climo Lightning Density 8pm to 2am
8pm to 2am
Climo Lightning Density 2am to 8am
2am to 8am

Regime: Ridge over Florida Panhandle

This flow regime is characterized a weak ridge across the Florida panhandle with lightning activity mainly concentrated across the west coast and northern and central interior sections associated with the east coast sea breeze.

 

Climo Lightning Threat 2pm to 8pm
The Climatological Lightning Threat from 2 pm to 8 pm is shown based on lightning probability and strike density. The images to the left of the lightning threat show climatological lightning probability (top row) and climatological strike density per flow regime day (bottom row) in 6 hour intervals. The images from left to right are valid: 8am to 2pm, 2pm to 8pm, 8pm to 2am, and 2am to 8am.
Regime: Ridge over Florida Panhandle
Climatological Lightning Probability
(click the maps for a larger size)
Climo Lightning Probability 8am to 2pm
8am to 2pm
Climo Lightning Probability 2pm to 8pm
2pm to 8pm
Climo Lightning Probability 8pm to 2am
8pm to 2am
Climo Lightning Probability 2am to 8am
2am to 8am


Regime: Ridge over Florida Panhandle

Climatological Lightning Density (click the maps for a larger size)

Climo Lightning Density 8am to 2pm
8am to 2pm

Climo Lightning Density 2pm to 8pm
2pm to 8pm

Climo Lightning Density 8pm to 2am
8pm to 2am
Climo Lightning Density 2am to 8am
2am to 8am
Lightning Page created by: Matt Volkmer, matthew.volkmer@noaa.gov
Lightning questions?: Matt Bragaw, matt.bragaw@noaa.gov

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