South Florida

Keep an eye on the sky before you leave for fireworks. There might be thunderstorms.

Miami celebrates July Fourth with fireworks over Biscayne Bay at Bayfront Park, 301 Biscayne Blvd. This year, the park opens at noon, with a kids’ zone from 3-7 p.m. and fireworks at 9 p.m.
Miami celebrates July Fourth with fireworks over Biscayne Bay at Bayfront Park, 301 Biscayne Blvd. This year, the park opens at noon, with a kids’ zone from 3-7 p.m. and fireworks at 9 p.m. Miami Herald File Photo

It might be a good idea to come up with a backup plan for Independence Day fireworks.

Forecasters say that rain — and worse, thunderstorms — might threaten this year's pyrotechnics displays. There's about a 40 percent chance of thunderstorms Wednesday evening, said National Weather Service forecaster Andrew Hagen.

The last couple of days, he said, storms have dissipated right after sunset.

"Tomorrow might be a little bit of a different story," he said. "Somebody in Miami-Dade or Broward is going to have some storms at least."

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The storms are likely to be isolated, but there's a chance they could be scattered. Forecasters will have a clearer picture Wednesday morning of what the evening has in store.

There's also a disturbance forming in the Atlantic Ocean, but Hagen said forecasters are confident it'll move north and stay far away from Florida. The National Hurricane Center predicts there's a 10 percent chance the disturbance will turn into a cyclone in the next 48 hours.

"That thing is going to be too far away to give us any rain," he said.

The worst weather will likely be between 2 p.m. and 5 p.m., Hagen said. Forecasters predict plenty of storms on the East Coast, especially inland. There could even be some stronger storms with gusty winds and small hail stones.

Rain alone isn't enough to ruin an outdoor event, but thunderstorms are bad news.

"If there's lightning or thunder, we recommend you go indoors," Hagen said.

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