PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WMBB) — Meteorologist Eric Bunker with the National Weather Service joined News 13’s Kimber Collins for a talk about the recent late evening rain storms and hot temperatures.
Bunker explained a day in the life at NWS Tallahassee.
“So typically, you know we come in, we have different shifts. We’re always here 24/7. So we have roughly 3 shifts that we come in and out of. We typically come in, we have 4 cast grids that we have to do. We write our discussions and then we’re always watching and monitoring radar and satellite data just in case we need to issue any type of short fuse products or warnings for the public. Outside of that, we also, you know, continue to watch other products that we need to issue that might be more on the longer fuse like frost that kind of stuff,” said Bunker.
Recently, the sunsets have been blocked by late evening thunderstorms. Bunker said this is caused by high temperatures and more moisture in the area during the day.
“During the summertime, which you know we’re kind of getting into our sea breeze season here, we typically start to have a little bit more moisture. We’re right along the Gulf Coast so a lot of that moisture surges up into our area and right around peak heating time in the afternoon and evening hours. We end up getting a lot of thunderstorms across the area and that can sometimes ruin your daily sunset photos that you might want, but fortunately this weekend it’s going to be quite dry, so you’ll have plenty of opportunities to get some great sunset photos for your Memorial Day weekend,” said Bunker.
In 2023, NWS says they are looking at an El Nino year.
“An easy way to say it is that we look at the sea surface temperatures across the Pacific, specifically the Equatorial Pacific. El Nino typically means that we’re having above-normal temperatures across that portion of the Pacific. This usually leads to what we like more wind shear across the Atlantic due to thunderstorms that develop across those warmer sea surface temperatures in the Pacific Equatorial regions. El Nino is warmer temperatures across those areas, whereas La Nina is below normal temperatures across the Equatorial Pacific,” said Bunker.
Bunker said having an El Nino year will affect the summer and winter seasons.
“Getting into the tropical season, could mean potentially more rain, especially during our winter season. Expect a more rainy and cooler winter season overall though, for the rainfall for the summer, look to be more average. Typically it impacts more with how many tropical systems we might see. So with hurricanes and tropical storms, look to see kind of around average this year given you know what we’re expecting in terms of you know how many and that kind of antecedent conditions across the Atlantic right now,” said Bunker.