General / Weekend News

Still too early to be making hurricane season predictions says Chief Met. Officer

By Benjamin Flowers, Staff Reporter

Chief Meteorological Officer, Dennis Gonguez, said on Saturday that weathers experts are having conflicting opinions over the 2015 hurricane season predictions because the forecast period is too long.

Gonguez was referring to the conflicting scenarios presented by Klotzbach and Gray from Colorado State University’s Department of Atmospheric Science, which has released some four scenarios which they say could be expected for the season.

“It’s still a little premature” Gonguez said, “the longer the forecast period, the more uncertainties the forecast will have; you will see those forecasts converge in April or May when they forecast again.”

The Colorado forecasters’ estimate for the hurricane season, opening on June 1, are:180 NTC – 14-17 named storms, 9-11 hurricanes, 4-5 major hurricanes 140 NTC – 12-15 named storms, 7-9 hurricanes, 3-4 major hurricanes 75 NTC – 8-11 named storms, 3-5 hurricanes, 1-2 major hurricanes 40 NTC – 5-7 named storms, 2-3 hurricanes, 0-1 major hurricane

They attribute the level of uncertainty to not knowing whether or not the then developing weak El Niño would persist through the 2015 hurricane season.

While significant weakening of the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation (AMO) and thermohaline circulation (THC) was noted during the spring of 2014, North Atlantic SST and sea level pressure patterns have since rebounded to conditions characteristic of an active era.

The 65-year climate norm is 11 tropical storms, 6 hurricanes, 3 intense hurricanes and ACE of 102, while the 10 year average is 15 tropical storms, 7 hurricanes, 3 intense hurricanes and ACE of 113.

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