Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Changes to the "Cone of Uncertainty"

From the Governor's Hurricane Conference in Fort. Lauderdale today, it was announced that due to better forecasting capabilities, the storm path cone, known as the "cone of uncertainty" is going to shrink. The cone is used to depict the projected area where the eye of a storm has a two-thirds chance of passing, based on five years of error analysis.

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.

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