Forecasters Sticking With Average Hurricane Season Forecast
The 2016 Hurricane Season has gotten off to a pretty fast start. We are already on our fifth named storm of the season. Hurricane Earl made landfall on the coast of Belize Thursday morning. So far none of these named systems have pose any major problems for any land mass in the continental United States. That's the good news. The bad news is that the climatological peak of the hurricane season is still more than a month away.
While the season appears to be setting up to be very active in the tropical Atlantic basin forecasters are standing by their preseason forecast of an average season. The reason this season seems so active is that the last three hurricane seasons have been well below average.
We’re not going to have the El Nino like we had last year and a little bit the year before. What El Nino does is it increases upper level westerly winds in the Atlantic and tears apart the storms.
Those comments reported by the Louisiana Radio Network are from Dr. Phil Klotzbach. Dr. Klotzbach is one of the most noted authorities on tropical weather forecasting the world. His team at Colorado State is sticking with their projection of 10 named storms for the season and perhaps four more systems reaching hurricane strength.
In his comments Dr. Klotzbach suggested that tropical activity should really begin to pick up between now and late August. His prognostication of a major hurricane affecting the Gulf Coast?
On average, there is about a 1 in 3 chance of the Gulf Coast, as well as the East Coast, getting hit by a major hurricane and this year our probabilities are right near the long term averages since we’re forecasting a near average season.
The tropical Atlantic should remain quiet at least for the next few days as now Tropical Storm Earl dissipates over Mexico. However officials throughout the Gulf South remind residents it only takes one significant storm to make a quiet hurricane season a bad one. Those officials are suggesting that now is the best time to create and prepare your hurricane kits and evacuation plans in hopes that you will not need those items anytime this season.