Heavy rain on the way: Weather Service issues flood watch for Daytona Beach area Monday

The National Weather Service issued a flood watch for coastal Volusia County on Monday, and meteorologists warn severe weather could be in the forecast Tuesday.

The agency warned of "persistent heavy showers and storms" expected to linger into Tuesday afternoon.

"Rainfall amounts of 3 to 4 inches are possible with locally higher amounts of up to 6 inches," according to an NWS weather alert.

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The heavy rainfall is expected to extend along the Volusia County coast, drenching New Smyrna Beach, Port Orange, Daytona Beach and Ormond Beach.

Jessie Smith, a meteorologist with the NWS in Melbourne, said the increased moisture was moving ahead of a low-pressure system in the Gulf of Mexico.

"Today we're expecting pretty wet weather and tonight as well," Smith said Monday. "Tomorrow we have a low-end threat for severe weather."

The low-pressure system was expected to move inland north of Tampa overnight and cross over Volusia County on Tuesday.

A beach hazard statement is in effect until the storms pass as increasing winds stir up rough surf.

"The waves will be pretty choppy. It's not advised to enter the water," Smith said.

Christmas Day forecast to be sunny, warm in Daytona Beach

Chances of precipitation were around 80% to 90% on Monday and Tuesday, but things should dry off before Christmas weekend.

"Once the system is through, there's no rain chances beyond Tuesday," Smith said. "It'll be really nice for Christmas."

Christmas Day, which is Saturday, is expected to be dry and sunny, with a daytime high in the mid-70s and overnight lows in the mid-50s.

A similar forecast is in effect for Christmas Eve day.

Before the weekend arrives, last-minute shoppers can enjoy a bit of cooler weather.

A high of only 64 is forecast for Wednesday and 67 degrees is projected for Thursday.

This article originally appeared on The Daytona Beach News-Journal: National Weather Service issues flood watch for Daytona Beach area