Florida Warned of Hail Storm as Record Heat Expected

A strong thunderstorm is expected to hit Florida on Tuesday, bringing pea-sized hail to the Jacksonville area, as the southern end of the state battles record heat.

A slew of severe weather has impacted the Gulf Coast states over the past week, bringing dangerous heat to Texas, flash flooding to Louisiana and heavy rain across several states. The National Weather Service (NWS) has warned that high heat will impact Florida this week. Temperatures are expected to reach the mid-90s in large areas of South Florida on Tuesday and Wednesday, although high humidity will make the weather feel closer to 110 degrees for some people.

“South Florida will continue to have well above-normal, with near to record high temperatures through Wednesday. Meanwhile, warmer temperatures will spread across the western states reaching well-above normal highs across the region by midweek,” an NWS forecast said.

Florida Warned of Hail Storm Heat Expected
The sun shines in Miami, Florida during a heat wave on June 26, 2023. Floridians were warned of a hail storm in northern Florida on Tuesday as a heat wave hit the southern part of…


A tornado watch was issued for northern Florida on Tuesday morning, and a strong thunderstorm was located south of Surrency, Georgia, moving northeast at 45 miles per hour. The NWS warned that the storm would be accompanied by wind gusts up to 55 miles per hour and pea-sized hail, which is around a quarter of an inch.

“Gusty winds could knock down tree limbs and blow around unsecured objects. Minor hail damage to vegetation is possible,” the warning said, adding that Baxley, Surrency, Plant Hatch, Odum, New Lacy and Pine Grove were at risk for the storm. “If outdoors, consider seeking shelter inside a building. Torrential rainfall is also occurring with this storm and may lead to localized flooding. Do not drive your vehicle through flooded roadways.”

Frequent cloud-to-ground lightning also is expected, prompting the NWS to urge people impacted by the storm to seek shelter.

NWS meteorologist Scott Cordero told Newsweek that the storms will impact Florida from Gainesville to Jacksonville for the next few hours. Another storm could move into the region on Tuesday afternoon, with a third system having potential to hit sometime after midnight.

In addition to the storm, the entirety of the state is under a “minor” risk for heat-related impacts according to the NWS HeatRisk index, which provides a forecast of heat-related impacts over the next 24 hours. Further south in the state, a larger number of Floridians are under “major” and “moderate” risk for heat-related impacts.

“This level of rare and/or long-duration extreme heat with little to no overnight relief affects anyone without effective cooling and/or adequate hydration. Impacts likely in most health systems, heat-sensitive industries and infrastructure,” NWS HeatRisk said.

Cordero told Newsweek that the storms are not caused by the heat.