Record temperatures and dry weather have sparked more than a dozen wildfires in Florida

Florida is known for its warm weather, but has been exceptionally dry this year. In April, South Florida hit June-like temperatures.

"Miami has seen 16 days of high temperatures at or above 90 degrees from January 1 through the end of April; they usually only have two 90-degree days during this point," said Haley Brink, CNN meteorologist.


In April, Miami did not have a single day when temperatures fell below average. In fact, more than half of the month saw temperatures at least 5 degrees above average.

More impressive is that Miami had 14 days of record highs in April. On April 20, the temperature hit 97 degrees, breaking the city's previous high of 96 degrees, set in 2015.

All that heat has resulted in fires, with the Florida Panhandle among the hardest hit areas. Last week, fires requested evacuation and closure of the road, including parts of Interstate 10 near Pensacola. And in Walton County, the Mussett Bayou fire destroyed several structures and forced officials to evacuate about 500 residents.

It's not just the heat


Lack of rain over Florida has also contributed to forest fires.

So far this year, Orlando and West Palm Beach are 7 inches below normal for rainfall. Daytona and Fort Myers are not far behind, with deficits hovering around 6 inches.

Lack of rain in Florida causing drought conditions

Although there is a chance of rain on Sunday, it is mainly focused on South Florida – not where the majority of fires burn.

Not all rain is also good news. The areas of Miami down through Key Largo could see 3 to 5 inches of rain through midnight. And some isolated spots can get 6 inches or more, which can trigger flash floods.

Florida drought monitor

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