Wednesday, December 23, 2009
Thursday, December 10, 2009
An early forecast for 2010 calls for an “above-average” hurricane season, according to the Tropical Meteorology Project at Colorado State University.
The team expects 11 to 16 named storms, 6 to 8 hurricanes and 3 to 5 major hurricanes — ones with sustained winds of 111 mph or greater.
Today’s prediction marks the first time William Gray’s team at CSU has provided a range of storms in its December early season forecast. The report is the team’s 27th year of hurricane seasonal predictions.
Because the report is based on Atlantic basin conditions, the team says its forecast could change substantially by the start of the hurricane season, which runs on June 1 to Nov. 30.
Gray’s team plans to list specific numerical forecasts in its next forecast on April 7.
“The Atlantic basin has the largest year-to-year variability of any of the global tropical cyclone basins,” Phil Klotzbach, the team’s leader, said in a release.
A weakening El Nino will allow more hurricanes to form, the team predicts. El Nino is a pattern of warmer-than-usual water in the Pacific Ocean, near the equator. The pattern creates more wind shear over the Atlantic, which breaks up tropical storms as they form.
“We anticipate the current El Nino event to dissipate by the 2010 hurricane season,” Gray said in the release, “and warm sea surface temperatures are likely to continue being present in the tropical and North Atlantic during 2010 — conditions that contribute to an above-average season.”
Their forecast is based on a statistical prediction scheme that uses 58 years of “hindcast” data. Over that time period, the scheme correctly forecasted above- or below-average seasons in 44 out of 58 years, the team said.
For the 2010 Atlantic basin hurricane season, the CSU hurricane forecast team expects:
# A 64 percent chance that at least one major hurricane will make landfall on the U.S. coastline in 2010. The long-term average probability is 52 percent.
# 40 percent chance (the long-term average is 31 percent) of a major hurricane making landfall along the U.S. East Coast, including the Florida Peninsula.
# A 40 percent chance (the long-term average is 30 percent) of a major hurricane making landfall along the Gulf Coast, from the Florida Panhandle west to Brownsville.
The full report.
Monday, November 30, 2009
Quietest season since 1997 and now 4 years from the last named storm hit Florida (Wilma). As a matter of fact, the latest Hurricane ever to strike the United States was on this day in 1925 right near here, just south of Tampa Bay.
Here's the Tampa Tribune's recap of the 2009 Hurricane season.
Thursday, October 01, 2009
Thursday, September 10, 2009
Today marks the peak of the 2009 Hurricane season. So far we've had 6 of the 10 named storms predicted and 2 of the 3 Hurricanes, both major (Bill & Fred).*
Ironically the Old Farmer's Almanac is out today with a prediction for a major hurricane to hit Florida in 2010.
Monday, September 07, 2009
Hurricanes and your vacation: What to do when a hurricane hits
The PDF also points out that, "For an average week during hurricane season, the probability of a Florida Keys visitor needing to evacuate because of a storm ...
Sunday, September 06, 2009
Tuesday, September 01, 2009
Monday, August 31, 2009
The National Hurricane Center is monitoring a broad area of low pressure far out in the Atlantic Ocean it gives a "greater than 50 percent" chance of becoming a tropical depression by Tuesday. It would be named Erika if it became a tropical storm or hurricane.
The system is located about 700 miles east of the Windward Islands, according to a 2 a.m. bulletin, and is moving northwest at about 15 mph.
Computer models run on Sunday night predict the storm continuing toward Florida and passing near Puerto Rico by this weekend, but vary widely thereafter.
Saturday, August 29, 2009
Sunday, August 23, 2009
Tropical Depression 12 formed an estimated 175 miles southeast of Nassau, and was moving northwest near 8 mph.
Tropical Storm Warnings were issued for the Central and Northwestern Bahamas.
The National Hurricane Center discusses the possibility of this depression becoming a hurricane and alerts Southern Florida, that a Tropical Storm or Hurricane Watch might be needed later that evening.
August 22, 2009
Florida Governor Charlie Crist thanks God that hurricanes have stayed away from Florida
Could it be divine intervention that's kept Florida safe from hurricanes since Gov. Charlie Crist took office?
Crist told a group of real estate agents Friday that he's had prayer notes placed in the Western Wall in Jerusalem each year and no major storms have hit Florida. Crist said he's not taking credit for the lack of storms in this hurricane-prone state.
Wednesday, August 19, 2009
Tuesday, August 18, 2009
One of the only portions of the United States currently in Hurricane Bill's 5-day "cone of uncertainty" is Martha's Vineyard where President Obama and family are scheduled to arrive this Sunday (August 23rd) for their summer vacation.
The 11am cone indicates that Bill could arrive at the same time!
Sunday, August 16, 2009
Lulled a bit into complacency from a nearly Storm free 2008 in Florida and no named storms through first 75 days of 2009, Ana, Bill and Tropical Depression #4 greet us this Sunday morning.
Time to check the supply list and pay attention to the NHC updates every 3 hours.
Happen to be in Miami this weekend and felt the precursor to TD #4 as it swept through here Saturday. Rained nearly all day long! Not a good day to have a leaky window. TD #4 could become Claudette later today and Bill may be up to hurricane status later today or by Monday. Probably will become a major storm.
Saturday, August 15, 2009
Thursday, August 06, 2009
Tuesday, August 04, 2009
December 2008 to August 2009 Change
Named Storms 14-10 (-29%)
Named Storm Days 70-45 (-36%)
Hurricanes 7-4 (-43%)
Hurricane Days 30-18 ( -40%)
Major Hurricanes 3-2 (-33%)
Major Hurricanes Days 7-4 (-43%)
Monday, August 03, 2009
Sunday, August 02, 2009
- Bill Gates' novel "ocean going tub" concept (to be funded by coastal residents according to the patent filing July 9th)
- Use of 250,000 foreclosed homes as temporary shelters
- One way evacuation plan
Wednesday, July 22, 2009
Nothing definitive yet and the reports I'm reading have a low probability of any of these forming into a large enough storm to be named (for now), but the water's warm and the tropical waves are forming.
Hurray for wind shear!
UPDATED: System is headed north and should provide rain to New England. We're clear for now.
Saturday, July 18, 2009
Friday, July 17, 2009
ZCZC MIATWOAT ALL
TTAA00 KNHC DDHHMM
TROPICAL WEATHER OUTLOOK
NWS TPC/NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL
200 PM EDT FRI JUL 17 2009
FOR THE NORTH ATLANTIC...CARIBBEAN SEA AND THE GULF OF MEXICO...
1. SHOWER ACTIVITY ASSOCIATED WITH A TROPICAL WAVE LOCATED ABOUT 800
MILES WEST-SOUTHWEST OF THE CAPE VERDE ISLANDS HAS BECOME A LITTLE
BETTER ORGANIZED TODAY. HOWEVER...CONDITIONS ARE ONLY MARGINALLY
FAVORABLE...AND ANY ADDITIONAL DEVELOPMENT WILL BE SLOW TO OCCUR AS
THE WAVE MOVES WESTWARD AT 15 TO 20 MPH. THERE IS A LOW CHANCE...
LESS THAN 30 PERCENT...OF THIS SYSTEM BECOMING A TROPICAL CYCLONE
DURING THE NEXT 48 HOURS.
ELSEWHERE...TROPICAL CYCLONE FORMATION IS NOT EXPECTED DURING THE
NEXT 48 HOURS.
Sunday, July 12, 2009
While this is interesting, my take away is the research goals in 2010 between NASA, their Jet Propulsion Laboratory & the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).
Five Things About Hurricanes
JPL scientist Bjorn Lambrigtsen goes on hurricane watch every June. He is part of a large effort to track hurricanes and understand what powers them.
Lambrigtsen specializes in the field of microwave instruments, which fly aboard research planes and spacecraft, penetrating through thick clouds to see the heart of a hurricane. While scientists are adept at predicting where these powerful storms will hit land, there are crucial aspects they still need to wrench from these potentially killer storms.
Here are thoughts and factoids from Lambrigtsen in the field of hurricane research.
1. Pinpointing the moment of birth
Most Atlantic hurricanes start as a collection of thunderstorms off the coast of Africa. These storm clusters move across the Atlantic, ending up in the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico or Central America. While only one in 10 of these clusters evolve into hurricanes, scientists do not yet know what triggers this powerful transformation. Pinpointing a hurricane's origin will be a major goal of a joint field campaign in 2010 between NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).
2. Predicting intensity
Another focus of next year's research campaign will be learning how to better predict a storm's intensity. It is difficult for emergency personnel and the public to gauge storm preparations when they don't know if the storm will be mild or one with tremendous force. NASA's uncrewed Global Hawk will be added to the 2010 research armada. This drone airplane, which can fly for 30 straight hours, will provide an unprecedented long-duration view of hurricanes in action, giving a window into what fuels storm intensity.
3. Deadly force raining down
Think about a hurricane. You imagine high, gusting winds and pounding waves. However, one of the deadliest hurricanes in recent history was one that parked itself over Central America in October 1998 and dumped torrential rain. Even with diminished winds, rain from Hurricane Mitch reached a rate of more than 4 inches per hour. This caused catastrophic floods and landslides throughout the region.
4. Replenishing "spring"
Even though hurricanes can wreak havoc, they also carry out the important task of replenishing the freshwater supply along the Florida and southeastern U.S. coast and Gulf of Mexico. The freshwater deposited is good for the fish and the ecological environment.
5. One size doesn't fit all
Hurricanes come in a huge a variety of sizes. Massive ones can cover the entire Gulf of Mexico (about 1,000 miles across), while others are just as deadly at only 100 miles across. This is a mystery scientists are still trying to unravel.
NASA and NOAA conduct joint field campaigns to study hurricanes. The agencies use research planes to fly through and above hurricanes, and scientists collect data from NASA spacecraft that fly overhead. NOAA, along with its National Hurricane Center, is the U.S. government agency tasked with hurricane forecasting.
For more information on how NASA and JPL study hurricanes, go to www.nasa.gov/hurricane and http://tropicalcyclone.jpl.nasa.gov
Wednesday, July 01, 2009
Invest 93L never developed into anything more than a whole lotta rain crossing the Florida Peninsula yesterday and today.
This is the morning commute today in downtown Tampa.
Saturday, June 27, 2009
Sunday, June 14, 2009
Saturday, June 06, 2009
Tuesday, June 02, 2009
Philip Klotzback & William Gray have lowered their 2009 storm forecast (pdf).
Tracking their December 2008 to April 2009 to June 2009 reports:
- Named Storms 14-12-11
- Hurricanes 7-6-5
- Major Hurricanes 3-2-2
The possibilties of a Category 3,4, or 5 storm hitting the US coastline now 48% (compared to 52% for the last century)
The US East Coast's probability is 28% (31% for last century)
The Gulf Coast from the Florida Panhandle westward to Brownsville also 28% (30% for last century)
There is a 39% probability of at least one major storm tracking into the Caribbean compared to 42% for the last century.
My non-scientific interpretation of this reduction in their latest report is due to evolving weather conditions that will provide more upper level wind shear coupled with stronger Atlantic trade winds in April & May, both of which normally decrease the levels of hurricane activity in the Atlantic ocean. They added that sea surface temperatures are lower in the tropical Atlantic that also is less conducive to storm activity.
In a long period of more active storm seasons, this is favorable data for this year!
Monday, June 01, 2009
My take away from this presentation, which is based on historical data and their April predictions, is that we are looking at an average to slightly above average Hurricane season, based on the lower image. 54% probability of at least one major (Cat 3-4-5) hurricane landfall somewhere on the U.S. coastline (compared to 52% average for the last century). Florida is at a 32% probability (31% for the last century).
Tomorrow we get their updated Seasonal Forecast. Find out more at the Colorado State University Tropical Meteorology Project website.
Sunday, May 31, 2009
The start of the season finds Florida's insurance market in a "fragile" state, an analysis by Fitch Ratings concludes. The largest remaining private insurer, State Farm, has threatened to leave within two years. The state-run insurer of last resort, Citizens, is the biggest player by some measures. The state's catastrophe fund, a backup to the insurance market, stands at least $9.5 billion short of being able to cover its maximum repayment obligations, Fitch figures.
Part of the trouble is hurricanes cost geometrically more than they did decades ago. Florida's population has grown more than 500 percent since 1950 to more than 18 million.
"The hurricanes haven't changed much," Chris Landsea, science and operations officer at the National Hurricane Center, said in a recent meeting in West Palm Beach. "We just have a lot more people in the way."
"If a major hurricane strikes Florida this season, we all pay!"
A strong reminder on the eve of the season's start!
Thursday, May 28, 2009
As in the past 2 years, there's activity occurring before the official start of Hurricane Season on Monday. The low off the Carolina coast that was suspect this week has become Tropical Depression #1. Moving up the eastern seaboard, but well off shore, it's a race between intensifying into a named storm ("Ana") or fizzling out in the colder waters of the Atlantic.
Otherwise, looks like good surfin' conditions along the Atlantic Seaboard
And here in Florida, Hurricane Preparedness Week continues.
Monday, May 25, 2009
Saturday, May 23, 2009
This year's state-wide theme is: "Get a Plan"
In past years, this coming week (or the first week of June) would also be the time when the "tax holiday" would begin offering Floridians the opportunity to buy specific storm related items without paying sales tax. This would be a noticeable savings on large items such as generators or if you stocked up on large quantities of batteries, flashlights, tarps, coolers, plywood & the like. Not this year -- due to the state's recession-impacted operating budget. I know in my case that I am pretty well stocked from previous years so the tax savings wouldn't have been material for me. Here's the official list of items suggested to have on hand.
In some past years - and this year - we've had pre-season rainstorms that have provided us with much needed rainfall and put enough moisture on the ground to start the "rainy season" that typically runs parallel to Hurricane Season. Rainy season is what Florida is stereotypically known for - usually brief but intense afternoon thundershowers brought on by the day's heating and the clashing of sea breezes across the peninsula.
We've had a near record-setting 11 straight days of rain in the Tampa Bay area which has been sorely needed to refill our resevoirs & aquifer as well as get our brown grass to start growing again. Rain has been heavy enough in some counties that the Governor has declared a state of emergency in 11 Florida counties mostly in the Orlando area. It's expected to rain throughout the Memorial Day weekend and gradually begin to dry up a bit next week leading up to the June 1st kickoff.
This year's pre-season event even got to the point where weather forecasters thought it COULD turn into a named (Ana) "subtropical" storm as the weather system moved northwest across the state. This morning they are still keeping an eye on the system as it heads into the gulf and towards the Florida panhandle, but the odds are low that it will more than a soaking rain event. The past 2 years have brought about "named" storms prior to the June 1st:
2007: Andrea - Subtropical storm May 6-14 with wind up to 65 MPH
2008: Arthur - Tropical storm May 31-June 2 with wind up to 40 MPH
Memorial Day and pre-(Hurricane) season rain - it's a new Florida tradition!
Sunday, May 17, 2009
"Florida has created a fragile, unstable insurance market that leaves Florida homeowners and taxpayers in grave financial risk."
Tuesday, May 12, 2009
Because predictions are getting better, the circles that make up the cone can shrink, said the National Hurricane Center's Robbie Berg
The straight black line that usually runs through the cone, connecting the dots where the storm is projected to travel, will also disappear. Berg said the center is removing the line because people often mistake it as a landfall prediction.
Here in Florida we are constantly reminded not to focus on the black line but rather watch the width and direction of the cone.
In addition, the process for predicting storm surge will be modified with more emphasis on the size of the storm, not just the category.
Read more here.
Sunday, May 10, 2009
- Citizens Property Insurance can aise rates a maximum of 10 percent annually until its rates are actuarially sound.
- Increases rates 1 percent each year to recover the cost of extra payments to the Florida Hurricane Catastrophe Fund, required for rapid reserve build-up.
- Florida Hurricane Catastrophe Fund
- Reduces coverage sold by $2 billion over the next six years.
- Implements a rapid reserve build-up program over the next five years. Insurers will pay additional premiums each year.
- Allows small insurers to purchase additional coverage from the CAT Fund.
- Allows private insurers to pass on up to 10 percent of their reinsurance costs to policyholders through expedited rate filings.
- Prohibits insurers from raising rates and then filing the required paperwork with state regulators until Dec. 31, 2010.
I don't believe this news has fully reached the over 1 million Citizen's Insurance customers in the state as well as everyone else here that will face higher rates partly due to the hurricane activity in 2004-5 and to protect the state's emergency Hurricane Catastrophe Fund in the future.
Wait till Charlie signs the legislation and watch for the fireworks! This won't be good.
Sunday, May 03, 2009
The bill is sitting on Governor Charlie Crist's desk as the week begins.
Hurricane Season starts in less than 30 days.
Wednesday, April 29, 2009
I'd say he's qualified:
As Florida’s emergency management chief since 2001, Fugate has responded to eight major hurricanes. A certified firefighter and paramedic, he also spent 10 years as a local emergency manager in Alachua County, Florida. He has managed the response to 11 federal disasters, 23 state emergencies and has overseen more than $4.5 billion in federal disaster assistance.
Saturday, April 18, 2009
The fund was established after Hurricane Andrew in 1992, to back up insurers in the event of a particularly devastating hurricane, or a quick succession of smaller ones. It now has an exposure of more than $28 billion with less than $8 billion on hand to pay claims.
Here's the round up of news coverage (although most of it says the same thing)
Ironically, Governor Charlie Crist found out about this via telephone as his trip to the state capital in Tallahassee was delayed due to Tornado warnings near his home in St. Petersburg, FL.
Tuesday, April 07, 2009
|December forecast||April update||Normal (based on 1950-2000 data)|
| Hurricane days||30||25||24|
| Intense hurricanes||2||3||2|
| Intense hurricane days||7||5||5|
| Accumulated Cyclone Energy (ACE)||125||100||96|
Read the details in here
Sunday, April 05, 2009
Saturday, March 14, 2009
Tuesday, February 03, 2009
Under the agreement, AEN's pioneering Internet- and satellite-based service will distribute live-video storm updates by National Hurricane Center forecasters during U.S. landfalling hurricanes and when other events warrant.These crucial video briefings by the nation's leading experts will be available to anyone with an Internet connection -- without charge, in real time and in their entirety via media websites that subscribe to the AEN network.
Sunday, January 11, 2009
Threw away my old 6 inch battery powered analog TV this weekend.
Looks like an opportunity for local radio!