Hurricane Forecaster predicts: Seven storms, three hurricanes and one major storm upcoming seasonPOSTED: 04/16/15 6:23 PM
St. Maarten – CSU’s April forecast for the 2015 hurricane season, by the numbers indicate that there will be seven storms, three hurricanes and one major storm: Tropical Storms 7 (58% of average) Hurricanes 3 (46% of average) Major Hurricanes 1 (50% of average) Overall Activity (ACE) 40 (43% of average)
The primary reasons for the below-average forecast: the current weal El Nino is expected to amplify to a moderate or strong El Nino; and ocean temperatures across the key regions of the Atlantic are cooler than average. They also search through the historical data for “analog” years or years when large-scale conditions most closely match what we’re seeing so far this year. Those seasons are 1957, 1987, 1991, 1993, and 2014, McNoldy concluded.
On April 9 for the 32nd consecutive year, Colorado State University (CSU) issued a long-range seasonal outlook for hurricane activity in the Atlantic.
Seasonal prediction of hurricane activity is done by several groups and agencies now, but the pioneer was Bill Gray in the early 1980s. Several of his students through the years made great contributions to the techniques, and since the early 2000s, Phil Klotzbach has been an integral part of the forecasts.
Since 2006, Phil has been the lead author, and in 2016, Bill Gray will be stepping down from the forecasts (not sure why… he’ll only be 86). During my 13+ years at CSU, I often chatted with Bill, Phil, and others about the forecasts, conditions, etc and gained an appreciation for the process and the curiosity that inspires it, said Brian McNoldy, Senior Research Associate at University of Miami’s Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science.
When you see/hear/read about these seasonal outlooks, it is important to understand what they mean to you. An active season does not mean you will get hit by a hurricane or two, and an inactive season does not mean that no storms will affect you. “Active” and “inactive” are relative to the average… so even during inactive years there will still be hurricanes, just fewer than average. But if there are only 4 hurricanes, and 3 of them make landfall near you….. well, you get the point, McNoldy pointed out.