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    Weather expected to be clear but cool

    By Times staff writer
    © St. Petersburg Times
    published February 24, 2002

    After two straight days of gray skies and nonstop drizzle, the Tampa Bay area can expect a return to sunshine.

    Forecasters are predicting at least two days of sunny weather because the clouds that have been covering the entire state of Florida are moving off to the northeast.

    "There may be a few showers Tuesday, but nothing compared to what we've been experiencing," said John McMichael, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Ruskin.

    Today should be clear and slightly cool, with high temperatures reaching the mid 60s, McMichael said.

    Monday and Tuesday should be slightly warmer, but a cold front is due to arrive in the middle of the week. Wednesday and Thursday, temperatures may drop to the upper 40s at night and the lower 60s during the day.

    "It will be a little bit cooler, but that will start to moderate again by Friday," McMichael said.

    Most of west-central Florida has received 1 1/2 to 2 inches of rain over the past two days. That has made firefighters and forest rangers happy, because the rain has temporarily alleviated dry conditions that were leading to wildfires.

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