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Freezing overnight temperatures will give way to warmer week

Bruce Van Meter of Rome, Ga., braves Monday morning’s chilly temperatures to wash down one of 14 Simmental cattle he is showing at the Florida State Fair in Tampa.

EDMUND D. FOUNTAIN | Times

Bruce Van Meter of Rome, Ga., braves Monday morning’s chilly temperatures to wash down one of 14 Simmental cattle he is showing at the Florida State Fair in Tampa.

Waking up to freezing temperatures Monday, Tampa Bay residents were reminded: Winter's not over yet.

Overnight temperatures dipped to the 20s in Pasco and Hernando and Hillsborough Counties and near-freezing temperatures in Pinellas, according to Bay News 9.

Little wind and no cloud cover created the perfect conditions for a freeze, prompting the National Weather Center to issue cold-weather warnings for 13 counties through 9 a.m. Monday.

Five of those counties, including Pasco and Hernando, experienced a hard freeze, meaning the temperature stayed below 27 degrees for more than two hours, according to the NWS.

Tampa Bay farmers had been warned and were ready for the cold by early Monday. Before sunrise, the coldest point in the day, farmers had turned on the sprinklers to create a protective layer of ice over their crops.

Several worried the unseasonably warm weather would leave the plants more vulnerable to the cold.

The good news is it will get warmer. But not before another near-freezing night, experts said.

After an afternoon in the mid 60s, Monday night temperatures were expected to drop into the 40s, said Bay News 9 meteorologist Juli Marquez.

Tuesday afternoon should see the temperature rise back into the 70s, where it will likely stay for the rest of the week, Marquez said.

Freezing overnight temperatures will give way to warmer week 02/13/12 [Last modified: Monday, February 13, 2012 12:17pm]
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