Hurricane Season


It’s time.  Time for that annual prediction made by predictors.  And what they’re trying to predict is the hurricane season.  And to be honest, I feel sorry for ’em.

Serious, it’s gotta be a tough job..  Having to predict the number of named storms and then how many of them will come ashore?  Jeepers,  no win if ya ask me.

But, they do it.  And here is this years:

FORT COLLINS, Colo. — Hurricane forecasters say cooler ocean temperatures in the Pacific and warmer temperatures in the Atlantic increases the risk for the East Coast to be slammed by a hurricane this season.

Colorado State University researchers Wednesday updated their Atlantic hurricane season forecast, saying there’s a 45 percent chance of a hurricane hitting the East Coast, including Florida. The historical probability is 31 percent.

Philip Klotzbach and William Gray’s refined forecast first issued in December predicts 15 names storms, with four of them developing into major hurricanes with sustained winds of 111 mph.

So, 15 named storms, 4 major himmicane’s and a 45% the US gets hit.

I take it from the “slammed” in the “the Atlantic increases the risk for the East Coast to be slammed by a hurricane” reference along with the 50% greater probability of a storm hitting our shores that the author feels this is ominous news.  So, I wondered…how bad has it been?

Let’s check the tape:

During the past 3-decades, there has been very little change in the number of hurricane-force tropical cyclones (64 knots +) or major tropical cyclones (96 knots +) in the Northern Hemipshere overall per calendar year. Through a simple examination of the best-track data, it is easily found that the number of major TCs during the 1980s was 149, 1990s was 179 and 2000s was 165. The overall trend is not significant during the past 30-years. The numbers for overall storms: 1980s: 324, 1990s: 367, 2000s: 317. Indeed, 2009 saw below normal number of TCs of hurricane strength in the NH, 27 storms. Of those, 12 were major storms.

And here is some nifty data showing the 24 month trend of Global Hurricane Days:

Global Hurricane Days

It looks like we are having fewer and fewer hurricane days in the last several years.  But how about total power of the cyclones?

That’s down too.

We may have that many storms; both total and severe.  But the tone of the article may be a bit misleading.

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