Friday, December 26, 2014

Forecasters sticking with hurricane forecast

Season starts slowly; forecasters say "wait."

Forecasters sticking with hurricane forecast

Despite all those scary forecasts, so far only three name-worthy tropical storms have formed this hurricane season, and that may be overstating the career of Colin.

Still, in their update released this morning, the Colorado State University forecasters are sticking with their call for a hyper-active season.

In June, the forecasters, Bill Gray and Philip Klotzbach, called for 18 named storms -- those with winds of at least 39 m.p.h. -- in the Atlantic Basin. This morning, they announced they're sticking with 18. The average is about 10.

They had called for 10 to become hurricanes, with winds of at least 74 m.p.h., and they're holding. The average is 6.

 Gray, a pioneer in the long-range hurricane forecasting business, has said that the seasons typically don't get cranked up until Aug. 15.

In this morning's update, Gray and Klotzbach noted that a La Niña, or unusual cooling of surface waters in the tropical Pacific, is developing.

During La Niña, the west-to-east shearing winds that inhibit hurricanes in the Atlantic Basin are essentially non-factors.

That's good for hurricanes, and bad for residents of the East and Gulf coasts.

Incidentally, as government forecasters have said, they say the BP oil eruption should have no impact on hurricane intensities in the Gulf.

The government plans to issue a forecast update tomorrow.

You can find the complete Colorado State forecast here.

Tony Wood Inquirer Weather Columnist
About this blog

Everyone talks about the weather, and here we write about it.

When we’re around and conditions warrant, we’ll keep you updated about what’s coming, but we will do our best always to discuss weather and climate developments in context and remind you that nothing in the atmosphere happens in a vacuum.

Tony Wood has been writing about the atmosphere for The Inquirer for 26 years.

Reach Tony at twood@phillynews.com.

Tony Wood Inquirer Weather Columnist
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