Summer brings hurricane season and here we are again, looking at predictions and preparing for the worst while we hope for the best.
Indeed, a hurricane can bring widespread destruction as Katrina did to New Orleans on August 29, 2005, but many would prefer those slow moving storms to tornadoes that can strike in the middle of the night without warning.
This year, the forecast team of Dr. Philip Klotzbach and Dr. William Gray at Colorado State University is predicting a normal season for this year.
They predict six hurricanes (vs. average 5.9), 12 named storms (vs. average 9.6) 55 named storm days (vs. average 49.1), 25 hurricane days (vs. average 24.5), two intense (Category 3 through 5) hurricanes (vs. average 2.3) and five intense hurricane days, which is average. Last year, their prediction was closer to what happened than the two previous years when they predicted much worse seasons.
El Nino conditions, which cause more vertical winds that tear apart developing hurricanes, are expected to increase, according to their forecast. They also toned down their prediction because of the cooling of sea surface temperatures in the tropical Atlantic, which makes an active Atlantic hurricane season less likely.
Updates to the forecast are due on June 2, Aug. 4, Sept. 2 and Oct. 1.
The Anna Maria Island Sun’s Hurricane Survival Guide is targeted toward residents and business owners on and around the Island. Keep it around and keep your eyes and ears on the weather forecasts as we ride out another season.