Wet days ahead

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MIAMI - Rain, rain go away come again in early May!

Were you singing that song? If you were humming that tune this winter, you might have contributed to the early start of the South Florida rainy season.

The National Weather Service sent word early, Tuesday that the rainy season is in full gear. You might have noticed afternoons of wet weather and even some severe storms.

If you have lived in South Florida for any amount of time, you are used to the rainy season starting in late May or early June. This year's rainy season started almost two weeks earlier than the average start of May 20th.

According to the Miami National Weather Service, the May 8th start of the rainy season is the earliest start since 2003.

What signals the start of the rainy season? The start date is determined by the date when showers and thunderstorms increase in coverage and intensity over much of South Florida. The storms continue to develop on a daily basis and are only interrupted by short episodes of dry weather lasting no more than a few days. The average length of the rainy season is from May 20th through October 17th. During that time the rainfall averages about forty two inches of rain which adds up to 70 percent of our total rainfall.

The dry season ranged from October 20th, 2011 to May 7th, 2012 in which Miami received 22.95 inches. That amount is about 3.89 inches about normal for that period.

In Fort Lauderdale the amount was less than Miami not even reaching the 20 inch mark.

In fact, the Fort Lauderdale gauge reported 18.30 inches. Not a surprise to see that just over eighteen inches of rain is a little more than four inches below normal for the period. While Fort Lauderdale was below average, if you live in Miami Beach you know that you had a "wet" dry season. Miami Beach measure more than 12 inches above average for the dry season with a total of 30.79 inches.

The plentiful rain in some parts of South Florida has helped with the drought conditions and now that we are officially in the rainy season we can expect more wet weather almost every day. Don't forget, there is interactive radar on justweather.com so you can track any storms that develop in South Florida during this rainy season.

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