Breezy start to February; beware of rip currents

Sun Sentinel

February should kick off with another warm breezy day, picking up where January left off.

Wednesday's forecast calls for partly sunny skies with highs in the low 80s and lows in the upper 60s. There is a 10 percent chance of rain.

If you're headed to the beach, beware of rip currents, the result of the easterly winds gusting up to 20 mph.

Overall, January temperatures were about normal, as the first half of the month was cooler than average and the last half was warmer, said meteorologist Robert Molleda of the National Weather Service in Miami.

However, considerably less rain than normal fell across the region, resulting in moderate drought conditions spreading to the Lake Okeechobee region and the Palm Beach County metro areas.

Indeed, South Florida has been parched through much of this dry season, which started in mid October.

For the period from Nov. 1 through Jan. 26, West Palm Beach received 8.19 inches less rain than normal, Fort Lauderdale 6.69 inches less than normal and Miami 3.8 inches less than normal.

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