Full Weather Coverage Link: Tampa Bay Weather
Tampa, Florida - While we won't get the snow and the sub-zero temperatures that are freezing through the rest of the country, Monday night's cold temperatures will continue in the Tampa Bay area through Wednesday morning. You will want to take precautions to protect your family, pets and plants as temperatures will drop to near or below freezing.
Cold weather shelters open in Tampa Bay area
'Polar Vortex' causes travel delays, cancellations at TIA
Freezing temps prompt danger warnings across US
A strong cold front has swept across the Tampa area and will be followed by a very cold arctic air mass called a "polar vortex," which is a counterclockwise-rotating pool of cold, dense air.
This air mass will affect more than half of the continental U.S. throughout Monday and Tuesday, with wind chill warnings stretching from Montana to Alabama to Florida.
PHOTOS: Cold weather photos from around the country
Temperatures around Tampa Bay will range from 29 to 32 degrees for several hours which has prompted the National Weather Service to issue a Hard Freeze Warning for Citrus and Hernando counties and Freeze Warnings for Pasco, Polk, Hillsborough, Manatee, Hardee, and Desoto counties until 9 a.m. today. Hernando and Cirtus counties are under a "Hard" Freeze warning as temperatures dipped to the mid 20s Monday night. Temperatures in the regular "Freeze" warning areas remain near 32 degrees. Pinellas and Sarasota counties are not under a Freeze Warning, but there will be some spots in northern Pinellas that will approach the freezing mark this morning and tomorrow morning.
The entire area is still under a Wind Chill Advisory through 9 a.m. today. Temperatures in the 20s and 30s combined with winds blowing NW 15-25 mph (with gusts in the 30s) produce wind chill values from 10 to 25 degrees.
Cold weather impacts and precautions:
Areas in the Hard Freeze area will see widespread damage to vegetation and crops if they are not protected. Those in the Freeze Warning area will also be close to seeing damage so precautions should be taken. Bring plants inside if you can or cover them up.
STORY: Strawberry farmers working to fight first freeze
Remember your pets. Bring them inside if you can and keep in mind their water bowls can freeze. Check on your neighbors. Be sure they have a warm place to stay tonight and tomorrow night. Always use care when heating your home. If you use a space heater, be sure it is not located close to items that may catch fire.
Shelters: See the shelters that are open in Tampa Bay
To see how long this cold snap will last, check out our Tampa Bay area 7-Day Forecast. Also you can get an hourly forecast for the Tampa Bay area here.
Get the Tampa Bay forecast here: Tampa Bay Weather
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