Monday, May 12, 2014

2014 Atlantic Hurricane Season - June 1 through November 30

   Here It Comes !

Most forecasters say that the Atlantic hurricane season will be mild this year. But others claim that it will be an 'active hurricane season for 2014. It is possible that up to 19 named storms can become reality, similar to the 2010-2012 seasons. In 2013, there were at least 16 named storms and 'Karen' was the last known storm that occurred in October. Normally, there are approximately 10 named storms per year for the Atlantic Hurricane Season, but some are predicting between 16 and 20 storms. It is estimated that 9 of these storms will become hurricanes this year. At least three should reach a category 3 status. It is highly likely that 1, maybe 2 of these storms will hit the United States. The most vulnerable areas are the coastline of Florida, Georgia and possibly the Carolinas. A late storm, the size of hurricane Sandy is not predicted by any forecasters this year. Because there is a predicted cool, moist flow from the Great Lakes and southeastern Canada, there is a strong chance that the New England area and northern Mid-Atlantic regions will not be affected by major storms this year. Presently, the sea-surface ocean temperatures show that it is in the between the stages of the warmer 'El Nino' and cooler 'La Nina." 
   There is also a possibility this year, that sometime this fall or during the winter of 2014-15, a new and warmer 'El Nino' may be declared. If this happens, the hurricane season should be cut short. El Ninos are largely responsible for tropical storm de-intensification. Of course, we will not know that answer until later this year. The El Nino produces lots of moisture in its own right, but for the west coast, especially California could especially use the extra rain, because presently there is a significant drought running throughout the state. Widespread fires are predicted in the state. 

The 2014 Hurricane Season will begin this year on June 1, 2014 and run through November 30, 2014. It covers the North Atlantic Ocean, Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean Sea.

Here are some of the facts about tropical weather to brush you up on terminology, as reported by a recent CNN article, and the National Hurricane Center.

The 2014 Atlantic hurricane season runs from June 1 to November 30. The areas covered include the North Atlantic Ocean, Gulf of Mexico and Caribbean Sea.

The National Weather Service defines a hurricane as "an intense tropical weather system with well-defined circulation and sustained winds of 74 mph (64 knots) or higher."

Hurricanes are rated according to intensity on the  Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Scale

A printable PDF file can be found at the following URL.....

The 1-5 scale estimates potential property damage.

A Category 3 or higher is considered a major hurricane.

The National Hurricane Center advises preparedness:

A hurricane watch indicates the possibility that a region could experience hurricane conditions within 48 hours.

A hurricane warning indicates that sustained winds of at least 74 mph are expected within 36 hours.

CategorySustained WindsTypes of Damage Due to Hurricane Winds
174-95 mph
64-82 kt
119-153 km/h
Very dangerous winds will produce some damage: Well-constructed frame homes could have damage to roof, shingles, vinyl siding and gutters. Large branches of trees will snap and shallowly rooted trees may be toppled. Extensive damage to power lines and poles likely will result in power outages that could last a few to several days.
296-110 mph
83-95 kt
154-177 km/h
Extremely dangerous winds will cause extensive damage: Well-constructed frame homes could sustain major roof and siding damage. Many shallowly rooted trees will be snapped or uprooted and block numerous roads. Near-total power loss is expected with outages that could last from several days to weeks.
111-129 mph
96-112 kt
178-208 km/h
Devastating damage will occur: Well-built framed homes may incur major damage or removal of roof decking and gable ends. Many trees will be snapped or uprooted, blocking numerous roads. Electricity and water will be unavailable for several days to weeks after the storm passes.
130-156 mph
113-136 kt
209-251 km/h
Catastrophic damage will occur: Well-built framed homes can sustain severe damage with loss of most of the roof structure and/or some exterior walls. Most trees will be snapped or uprooted and power poles downed. Fallen trees and power poles will isolate residential areas. Power outages will last weeks to possibly months. Most of the area will be uninhabitable for weeks or months.
157 mph or higher
137 kt or higher
252 km/h or higher
Catastrophic damage will occur: A high percentage of framed homes will be destroyed, with total roof failure and wall collapse. Fallen trees and power poles will isolate residential areas. Power outages will last for weeks to possibly months. Most of the area will be uninhabitable for weeks or months.

April 10, 2014 - Forecasters William Gray and Phil Klotzbach of Colorado State University release their 2014 hurricane season predictions: nine named storms and three hurricanes, one of them major.


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