Tampa ties record high with 99 degrees. When will it hit 100?

The city was just one degree shy of a new record high. The Gulf of Mexico is why Tampa has never reached 100 degrees — so far, that is.
The Tampa skyline as seen in 2019.
The Tampa skyline as seen in 2019. [ Times (2019) ]
Published June 27, 2020|Updated June 27, 2020

Tampa tied its hotter temperature ever on Friday and was just one degree shy of a record-high of 100 degrees.

The National Weather Service reported that Tampa reached a high temperature of 99 for the day at 1:51 p.m., matching the record-high temperature that was reached on June 5, 1985.

Though feels-like temperatures are regularly in the triple digits in Tampa, the official temperature has never made it to the century mark. That was the case again this week as the daily heat advisories issued since Wednesday each listed highs in the upper 90′s.

All of Tampa Bay was scorching on Friday. The weather service reported that St. Petersburg’s high was 97, Ruskin was 98 and Lakeland’s was 95. Feels-like temperatures were up to 112 in some areas of the region.

Those who sought reprieve from the heat on Friday at the area’s beaches were likely disappointed, too. The weather service reported water temperatures at Clearwater Beach reached 92 degrees.

Spectrum Bay News 9 Meteorologist Nick Merianos says that the humidity and the sea breeze off the Gulf of Mexico helped keep the temperature down in Tampa Bay just enough to avoid setting that 100-degree record.

That breeze is also why the city has — so far — never eclipsed 100 degrees.

“Just about every afternoon, a sea breeze develops off the Gulf of Mexico and Tampa Bay and it moves inland,” he said. “This is a cooler air mass that moves in and cools our area down each afternoon.”