UPDATE: 1 a.m. Friday

The bridge has reopened.

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It may be just the beginning of a long night.

Florida Highway Patrol shut down the Sunshine Skyway Bridge in both directions Thursday afternoon because of strong winds.

According to a tweet from FHP, wind gusts have reached more than 40 miles per hour.

Drivers traveling from Pinellas to Manatee County can take the Gandy Bridge to the Selmon Expressway and follow I-75 South through Hillsborough County.

RELATED: Severe weather outlook in Florida: Strong winds, tornados possible

RELATED: Severe weather threat affects events across Tampa Bay

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