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2006 hurricane season forecast; severe weather outbreak update

By: Dr. Jeff Masters, 1:56 PM GMT on April 04, 2006

Today marked the release of Dr. Bill Gray's latest 2006 Atlantic hurricane season forecast, and it looks like we are in for another long and busy hurricane season. The team from Colorado State University (CSU), led by Dr. Bill Gray and Philip Klotzbach, predict 17 named storms (average is 9.6), 9 hurricanes (6 is average), and 5 intense hurricanes (average is 2.3). The net activity for the season is expected to be 95% higher than normal. The entire Caribbean and U.S. coast is at above-normal risk for a strike by a major hurricane, with the U.S. East Coast (including the Florida Peninsula) at 64% risk, and the Gulf Coast at 47% risk. There is an 81% chance that at least one major hurricane will strike the U.S. coast. However, it is statistically unlikely that this coming season will have as many major hurricane U.S. landfall events as we saw in 2004-2005.

The forecasters cite three main reasons to expect a very busy season:

1) While the Atlantic Ocean is cooler than it was at this time last year, sea surface temperatures remain warmer than average, and are expected to be warmer than average during the August-October peak of hurricane season.

2) Neutral or weak La Ni�a conditions are likely to be present during August-October 2006. A weak to moderate La Ni�a event is now occurring, with trade winds in the central Pacific anomalously strong and oceanic heat content in the tropical Pacific well below normal. These features will likely keep Eastern Pacific waters from becoming anomalously warm over the next few months and ending the La Ni�a event. In addition, most forecast models call for either neutral or La Ni�a conditions to persist for the next 4-6 months. When the tropical Atlantic is warm, and neutral or La Ni�a conditions are present, Atlantic basin hurricane activity is greatly enhanced.

3) We continue to be in the positive phase of the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation (AMO), the decades-long cycle of natural hurricane activity.

Accuracy of last year's April forecast
How did last year's early April hurricane forecast verify? The CSU team did forecast an above-normal year, but did not foresee the extraordinary season that would ultimately unfold. They forecasted 13 named storms (average is 9.6), 7 hurricanes (6 is average), and 3 major hurricanes (2.3 is average. In reality, there were 27 named storms, 14 hurricanes, and 7 major hurricanes. However, they did mention that a continued Atlantic Ocean warming would cause them to raise their forecast numbers for their May 31 and August 5 forecasts, which is what happened.

With this forecast, Dr. Gray hands over leadership of the forecast team to Phil Klotzbach. While Gray, 76, is at the older end of the spectrum of hurricane scientists, Klotzbach, 26, is definitely at the younger end. He earned his Bachelor's degree at age 18 from Bridgewater State College in Massachusetts, then picked up a Masters degree in Atmospheric Science from Colorado State University four years later. He has been a research associate working with Bill Gray since 2001. Dr. Gray will continue to be very involved in working on these forecasts, but prefers to concentrate on researching the connection between hurricane activity and global warming. He is a vocal opponent of theories connecting recent increases in intense hurricane activity with global warming.

Severe weather outbreak of April 2-3
At least 60 tornadoes ripped through Missouri, Arkansas, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, and Tennessee Sunday, killing 28 people. Hardest hit was northwest Tennessee, where tornadoes claimed at least 12 lives in Dyer County. A preliminary damage survey by the NWS rated this tornado a strong F3, with winds of 200 mph. The tornado that devastated Marmaduke, Arkansas, was also a strong F3, and may have ranked as a violent F4 tornado (207-260 mph winds) on the Fujita scale. More damage surveys are being performed today to determine the exact strength of this tornado. Many other tornadoes from this outbreak also ranked as F3, and the April 2 tornado outbreak may match the March 13 outbreak for number of strong tornadoes. The March 13 outbreak had 11 strong F3 tornadoes among the 84 that touched down.

The last time we had two major tornado outbreaks killing 12 or more people was in 1998. With the peak of tornado season still a month away, we have the potential for the nastiest tornado season seen in a long time--to go along with what could also be a very long and deadly hurricane season.

Jeff Masters
Hailstones
Hailstones
These are two of the hailstones that hit north central Arkansas from a quickly developed thunderstorm that went through Arkansas then through Tennessee causing more damage as it moved eastward
Prelude to April Showers
Prelude to April Showers
Just about ready to cut loose with the season's first major thunderstorm!!

Tornado

The views of the author are his/her own and do not necessarily represent the position of The Weather Company or its parent, IBM.

Reader Comments

oh boy and not long to wait for 2006 hurricane year to start

1st

dr M where are you at and how was the sever weather for you
The net activity for the season is expected to be 95% higher than normal.

Ugh! Hang On Folks...
It's Going be a Wild Ride!
"He earned his Bachelor's degree at age 18 from Bridgewater State College in Massachusetts, then picked up a Masters degree in Atmospheric Science from Colorado State University four years later."

O.K. I must say that's kinda impressive...he has some pretty big shoes to fill, nevertheless...
What is the probablity that a hurricane will strike the North Eastern Coast (NY or higher?)

We could use a good category 1 or 2 to knock down the weak trees and clean up the dying branches.
Hurricane Beta report's just been released. That's all of 'em...
so, was that F3 tornado the one that Dr. M was talking about possibly being an F5, or was that one not rated yet?
"It is statistically unlikely that this coming season will have as many major hurricane U.S. landfall events as we saw in 2004-2005."

I bet that's what they said about each of the last couple years before they even happened! :O
OK FLORIDIANS, HUNKER DOWN FROM JUNE 1, 2006 UNTIL FEBRUARY 1, 2007! Has Dr. Gray ever come down to witness one of Florida's hurricane seasons? This is too scary!!

Curio: You don't know what you are wishing for. Don't even think hurricane!
It was certainly said of 2005 after 04. But thats why they say its 'statistically' unlikely. Nature couldnt care less about statistics and what they predict. If it's going to be an active season, it will be active regardless of what happened last season.
I noticed that Gray did not even change the number of storms, ACe, etc from the December outlook.
Nothing must have changed to make him more confident in anothr number.

To come up with an excact number is pretty difficult, imo. Local changes in weather can effect whether a storm developes or not, and I dont think long term prediction of those changes are very good, or even possible. I look at these early season forecasts as nothing more then crap shoots.

Look at 2005's forecast -
NOAAs 2005 Atlantic hurricane season outlook calls for 12-15 tropical storms, with 7-9 becoming hurricanes, and 3-5 of these becoming major hurricanes.

Posted By: RL3AO (206.131.9.10) at 11:26 AM EDT on April 04, 2006.
so, was that F3 tornado the one that Dr. M was talking about possibly being an F5, or was that one not rated yet?


That tornado was rated as a strong F3. There were no F5 tornadoes in the outbreak.

Jeff Masters
I will be watching for the next outbreak on Thurs across the midwest...the NAM looks pretty active. YIKES
My NWS says that Firday appears to be even more favorable in the forecast discussion:

FOR THURSDAY/FRIDAY...SHOULD SEE NEW CONVECTION FIRE AHEAD OF
WARM FRONT LATE WEDNESDAY NIGHT AND THEN EXIT DURING THURSDAY
MORNING. SCATTERED CONVECTION IS THEN EXPECTED AS THE FA ENTERS
THE WARM SECTOR WITH THE LACK OF A LOW LEVEL BOUNDARY TO FEED OFF
OF...WHICH DOES NOT ENTER THE WESTERN PORTIONS OF THE FA UNTIL
THURSDAY EVENING. POTENTIAL FOR SEVERE STORMS EXISTS WITH THIS
EVENT THURSDAY EVENING AND OVERNIGHT. CONTINUING INTO FRIDAY...
LOW LEVEL MOISTURE IS SCOURED OUT A BIT BUT THEN RECOVERS IN TIME
FOR MAIN UPPER LEVEL IMPULSE...WITH ITS VERY STEEP MID LEVEL LAPSE
RATES AND SHEAR VALUES...LOOKS EVEN MORE FAVORABLE FOR SEVERE
STORMS FRIDAY AFTERNOON
. TIMING IS EVERYTHING AND MODELS WILL TAKE
THE NEXT COUPLE OF RUNS FINE TUNING THINGS...ESPECIALLY HOW
RAPIDLY EASTWARD THE UPPER LEVEL LOW WILL PROPAGATE.

The report offers the "best analog years for 2006" as 1964, 1996, 1999 and 2003. You may notice that more storms seem to have theatened the US East Coast vs. the Gulf Coast.

Track Charts from wunderground.com
1964

1996

1999

2003
Firday is Friday.
Michael, yes..sorry..my bias was to KC to where I live..I would expect it to be a bit later for you folks in STL.
The discussion appears to suggest that there will be two rounds of severe weather in my area - on Thursday evening/night and Friday afternoon. Also, it says that models have been too fast for the next system to arrive.
I think the Thurs piece is more the warm front interaction, and Fri the dry line/cold front piece..dunno. Seems ya'll get hammered about 8 hrs after we do as well...we shall see. I have been fortunate so far, only having a bit of minor damage with all the storms so far...I missed the large hail, tornados, and only have gotten some 50-60MPH wind and pea/marble size hail thus far.
Thank you, Dr. Masters for all of your informative reports. I have been reading them for some time. It is like belonging to an online weather university. Many thanks!
Good afternoon. I just joined Wunderground after months of watching the commentary unfold here. I am the director of a recovery/response organization that was formed immediately after Hurricane Ivan in 2004 and have been working the last year and a half to make our community stronger, more prepared. We've been working the damage after Hurricane Katrina as well. I will be honest, the thought of another Gulf Coast strike frightens me. I have heard so many different models/ forecast for the 2006 Season. One model that trickled down to me from other agencies is that our area (NW Florida panhandle, the Alabama coast, and the Mississippi coast) have a 70% probability of a direct hit for the next year. Dr. Jeff, I trust your opinions...what do you feel?
22. danm
I've seen a quote from Dr. Gray that indicates that he not only believes that the connection between hurricane activity and global warming is suspect, he believes that the existance of human induced global warming is suspect. The quote indicates a belief that global warming is simply part of the natural variation, like the hurricane cycle.

Does anyone, in particular Dr. Masters, know if this is an accurate reflection of his opinion. The experimental support for anthropological global warming appears very convincing to me. While I'm a physicist, and not a meterologist,I do believe that we analyze data in a similar manner. So, I don't see how a first rate scientist, as Dr. Gray seems to be, can dismiss the issue so quickly.
Right now, the sun is supposed to be at the solar minimum, but there is quite a bit of activity right now. Link
can somebody tell me if there is a map that they predict like the chances of a certain spot getting hurricane winds?
Regarding Dr. Master's last entry: As I was watching the tropics from mid August through the end of the season(I wasn't able to before then), I noticed that the Cape Verde areas of convection did not develop too much. I was wondering if there is a correlation between this lack of development and the huge hurricane season. I would think there would be an opposite correlation, and that if some of areas would have developed it just would have added to the # of storms.
The lack of Cape Verde storms was due to lots of Saharan dust (there probably would have been over 30 storms without the dust).
That would have been bad. I could be wrong, but it seems reasonable to believe that "Cape Verde" hurricanes are more likely to hit the East Coast.

Imagine how much worse it could have been if even a cat-1 hurricane had hit a place like NYC.
Yes, I tend to agree with MichaelSTL, that is, it seems there would have been even more storms. But since it was such an incredible season, I am wondering if the lack of the Cape Verde development had any significant influence on other tropical development in the Atlantic basin.
here's the link to Gray's forecast by county
If memory serves me right, the lower Mid-Atlantic, where Cape Verde hurricanes form, had quite a bit of shear from August onward. Combined with Saharan dust, any healthy looking wave that came off Africa was quickly snuffed out.
Hurricane Irene was the only Cape Verde storm last season. Irene reached cat-2 in the open Atlantic.

TD 19 also formed near the Cape Verde Islands, but failed to develop any further.
my blog is update this is a good joke that they are doing on my weather come see
Special Weather Statement
SPECIAL WEATHER STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE NEW ORLEANS LA
800 AM CDT TUE APR 4 2006


...A DRY START TO 2006 AND THE ONSET OF A DROUGHT FOR SOUTHEAST
LOUISIANA AND COASTAL MISSISSIPPI...

THE FIRST THREE MONTHS OF 2006 HAVE COMBINED TO SET A RECORD FOR
LOWEST RAINFALL AT BATON ROUGE AND NEW ORLEANS. THIS COMPARES TO THE
VERY DRY STARTS OF 2000 AND 1962.

AT BATON ROUGE SINCE JANUARY 1ST THROUGH APRIL 3RD...ONLY 6.41 INCHES
OF RAINFALL HAS BEEN MEASURED. NORMAL RAINFALL FOR THE SAME
PERIOD IS 16.89 INCHES. THIS IS A DEFICIT OF 10.48 INCHES BELOW
NORMAL. THE PREVIOUS DRIEST PERIOD WAS 2000...WHICH MEASURED 7.20
INCHES THROUGH APRIL 3RD.

AT NEW ORLEANS SINCE JANUARY 1ST THROUGH APRIL 3RD...6.74 INCHES OF
RAINFALL WAS MEASURED AND COMPARES TO A NORMAL OF 17.09 INCHES...A
DEFICIT OF 10.35 INCHES BELOW NORMAL. THE PREVIOUS DRIEST 3 MONTH
PERIOD THROUGH APRIL 3RD WAS 6.81 INCHES IN 1962. IN ADDITION...
2000 HAD 7.09 INCHES AT NEW ORLEANS FOR THE SAME PERIOD.

SINCE JANUARY 1 2005...NEW ORLEANS HAS A RAINFALL DEFICIT OF 21.49
INCHES...DESPITE BIG RAINFALL EVENTS FROM HURRICANE CINDY AND
HURRICANE KATRINA. AT BATON ROUGE...THE 15 MONTH DEFICIT FROM
JANUARY 1 2005 IS AROUND 18.76 INCHES BELOW NORMAL.

THE REASON FOR THE UNUSUALLY DRY CONDITIONS AND THE ONSET OF A
MODERATE AGRICULTURAL DROUGHT IS BELIEVED TO BE LINKED TO THE LA
NINA PHENOMENON OF THE EQUATORIAL PACIFIC OCEAN. COOLER THAN NORMAL
WATER TEMPERATURES ALONG THE EQUATOR IN THE EASTERN PACIFIC
OCEAN ALTERS THE TRACKS OF STORM SYSTEMS TO WELL NORTH OF THE GULF
STATES...THEREBY LIMITING THE OPPORTUNITIES FOR TYPICAL RAIN
EPISODES. THE CURRENT LA NINA CYCLE IS CONSIDERED TO BE WEAK.
COMPARABLE YEARS WITH SIMILAR LA NINA CONDITIONS SINCE 1950 INCLUDE
1960-1961...1984-1985...1995-1996...2001-2002. THIS YEAR IS THE
SECOND PART OF A 2005-2006 CYCLE.

AS WE APPROACH THE UPCOMING HURRICANE SEASON...SEVERAL CORRELATIONS
TO THE LA NINA AND ATLANTIC TROPICAL CYCLONE ACTIVITY WILL BE MADE.
RECENT STUDIES INDICATE THAT THE LA NINA PHASE OF THE ENSO CYCLE
IS TYPICALLY MORE ACTIVE...SLIGHTLY ABOVE NORMAL...THAN THE EL NINO
COUNTERPART OF THE ENSO CYCLE. THE COMPARABLE OR ANALOG YEARS
PREVIOUSLY MENTIONED AVERAGED 12 NAMED STORMS AND 7 HURRICANES IN THE
ATLANTIC BASIN IN THE SECOND SEASON OF THE PHASE. ON AVERAGE IN THE
GULF OF MEXICO IN ANALOG YEARS...3 NAMED STORMS AND 2 HURRICANES
TYPICALLY DEVELOP. WHILE THESE ARE STATISTICAL AVERAGES...THEY DO NOT
FULLY REVEAL WHAT KIND OF ACTIVITY CAN BE EXPECTED IN THE UPCOMING
SEASON NOR INDICATE AREAS OF HIGHER CHANCES OF LANDFALLING
HURRICANES.

HISTORICALLY...SOUTHEAST LOUISIANA AND COASTAL MISSISSIPPI HAD
SEVERAL TROPICAL STORMS AND HURRICANES OCCUR IN THE COMPARABLE YEARS.
IN 1960...HURRICANE ETHEL HIT LOUISIANA AND MISSISSIPPI. IN 1985...
HURRICANE ELENA STRUCK THE MISSISSIPPI COAST AND HURRICANE JUAN
MEANDERED OVER SOUTH LOUISIANA FOR SEVERAL DAYS. THE 1995-1996
SEASONS HAD NO LANDFALLS IN LOUISIANA OR MISSISSIPPI. IN 2001...
TROPICAL STORM ALLISON AFFECTED SOUTHEAST TEXAS...LOUISIANA AND
MISSISSIPPI. IN 2002...AN ACTIVE SEASON SAW TROPICAL STORMS BERTHA...
HANNA AND ISIDORE MAKE LANDFALL IN THE CENTRAL GULF STATES ALONG
WITH HURRICANE LILI INTO SOUTH-CENTRAL LOUISIANA. FINALLY....THE
2005 SEASON SAW 10 NAMED STORMS AND 6 HURRICANES IN THE GULF OF
MEXICO WITH HURRICANES CINDY...KATRINA AND RITA MAKING HISTORICAL
LANDFALLS ON LOUISIANA AND MISSISSIPPI SHORES.

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE OFFICE IN SLIDELL WILL CONTINUE TO
MONITOR THE TRENDS IN THE UPCOMING MONTHS REGARDING THE DROUGHT
SITUATION. FOR MORE INFORMATION REGARDING THE NATION`S DROUGHT
CONDITIONS...VISIT THE NATIONAL DROUGHT MONITOR WEBSITE AT
HTTP://WWW.DROUGHT.UNL.EDU/DM/DRMON.GIF (ALL LOWER CASE). FOR
ADDITIONAL INFORMATION ON LA NINA...VISIT THE CLIMATE PREDICTION
CENTER WEBSITE AT HTTP://WWW.CPC.NCEP.NOAA.GOV (ALL LOWER CASE) AND
THE CLIMATE DIAGNOSTIC CENTER WEBSITE AT HTTP://WWW.CDC.NOAA.GOV
(ALL LOWER CASE).

Weren't Emily and Dennis Cape Verdes, I remember as both had similars paths to 2004 Ivan?
Dennis formed very close to the Windward Islands, and Emily, I believe, formed about midway between the Cape Verde Islands, and the Lesser Antilles.
Also, Emily did not take the same kind of path that Ivan and Dennis took, as it did not make the turn to the North.
Cindy was upgraded to a hurricane so there were actually 15 hurricanes in 2005.
LOL...look at the ruler in picture - "for home sewing use only" :)
That system near South America might be worth watching if it can get away from land.

Link
I have a question about the Fujita Scale... is the F-rating based on the AMOUNT of damage done, or the TYPE of damage done? If one tornado breaks out every window in a large city and another tornado goes through and rips the roof off one house... the first tornado did more damage dollar-wise, but the second tornado was obviously stronger, which one will receive a higher rating?
nice hail

Been watchin with mild interest, what was NE of PR, the convection, now 1/2 way across the Atlantic. The ULL to the NW of it yesterday has now caught up~ Link. The shear seems too high. Anyone else noticed QUIKSCAT has been down?

Agreed we might have seen a storm or 2 more without the dust last year. Also think this saved FL alot of damage. Like Katrina's Fl approach, she'd have most likely been raging had it not been for shaking out dust on the transatlantic journey.
Maverick~ The 2nd. It's all about wind speed, the $ amount isn't part of the factors.
Does anyone have a link directly to Mother Earth? If so, please inform her that if she decides to send a few cat. 3 or higher storms... that I hear the East Coast is a wonderful spot. No offense, but we've been pounded enough on the Gulf Coast.
Thanks Skyepony...that's what I figured, but just wanted to make sure.
Hey everyoe,

I have read all the interesting discussions lately in here about how we could've had even more Tropical storm formations during the 2005 season if it weren't for the African dust, more Cape Verde storms, etc.

However, I would caution you to remember that all of those factors didn't inhibit the storms from actually forming, but allowed them to intensify further west and actually helped those like Dennis, Emily, Katrina, Rita, and Wilma to reach such intensities that very well may not have occured otherwise.

In other words, all the "ifs" and could'ves" each could be applied the other way and have attributed to a somewhat less active and less intense tropical cyclone activity.

Moreover, one needs to also realize that all the Greek letter storms that formed late in the season most likely would not have been accounted for during a season like the 21 storm 1933 hyperactive hurricane season, not to mention that had these storms been identified, the NHC didn't begin naming these Subtropical type storms at best (which they would've no doubt been considered back then without satellites, radar, or even reconaissance) until the year 2000.

I only mention this to keep the past historical seasons in perspective and to suggest there was not and is not as great a disparity between the 1933 season and last year for example.

It is also important to realize that despite all the intense storms we had last season, the 1950 season STILL holds the record for most major hurricanes for a particular season.

All storm seasons prior to 1960 have to be understood that there were likely additional storms that went undetected without satellites which would still be the case today for many of the late season storms from last season, that were too far out in the Atlantic for reconnaisance flights or radar.

Likewise, even if identified by ships, they most likely would've been considered simply strong extratropical systems as was probably the case for many storms that developed during seasons prior to satellite capability that began in 1960.

Thanks,
Tony


By the way, tornado wind speed is almost never actually measured and damage that look like F5 damage can be caused by much weaker tornadoes, such as F3. Also, the Enhanced Fujita Scale greatly reduces the wind speeds of F3 to F5 tornadoes (the speeds for F0 are increased): F5 on the EF scale is over 200 mph, not 261 to 318, as the original F scale.
: MichaelSTL mail for you i thinkcome to my blog
Hey everyone,

I need to clarify that paragraph four of my previous post referencing "subtropical type storms at best" refers to what they would've been considered without satellite technology, etc. and not to imply these Greek letter storms were not truly tropical storms which they were.:)

Thanks,
Tony


Hey Michael,

Great work and information supplied by you as usual.:)

I agree totally with the central premise of your comments and the rationale for the new "enhanced" Fujita tornado scale.

The only reservation I have about it is that a very rare, but still possible tornado like the May 1999 Oklahoma city F5 that had recorded 301 mph as mentioned already in DR.. Masters blog a couple of days ago, and has even been listed as having slighly higher wind speeds in some "official" reports, would be a full 100 mph plus greater than the top end wind speed criteria for the new "EF" scale.

In other words, those who are claiming we need an additional category to account for more intense hurricanes like Wilma for example with 185 mph sustained winds, can make a far greater argument for the necessity for a new F6 classificaton for those like the historical 1999 Tornado.

I have to go, but I hope each of you have a great night.:)

Thanks,
Tony


NOAA has an article out, talking about this year's very active tornado season. Also, this is interesting: "The difference this year is the abnormally warm temperatures and dry conditions during the winter throughout the southern and central United States that kept water temperatures warm in the Gulf of Mexico."

Link

Also, the number of tornado deaths is already nearly as high as all of last year, and higher than 2004, even though there have been only half the number of deadly tornadoes, indicating that the tornadoes this year are more violent and destructive.
: MichaelSTL mail for you e mail me
Hey Michael,

On the other hand, all things being considered, I still feel that there is neither a need for a new category for the SSHS for hurricanes nor the EF Tornado scale.

In the case of the latter, I think that an F5 classification should be assigned a greater wind criteria than simply over "200 mph" when one considers we have had measured 301 mph winds from the May 1999 Oklahomas City Tornado.

In short, I would personally like to have seen a slightly wider range of wind criteria for each category than the new EF scale, but understand the need to make the revisions itself for obvious reasons as you already noted.:)

I hope you and everyone else has a wonderful night.:)

Thanks,
Tony


Posted By: louastu at 4:40 PM EST on April 04, 2006.
Also, Emily did not take the same kind of path that Ivan and Dennis took, as it did not make the turn to the North.

It did up to the Caymans, so for about 2/3rds of its path.
i have updated my blog
Dennis and Emily were not true Cape Verdes, but they shared many charictaristics.
58. Inyo
On a side note, it appears that La Nina is having little or no influence on west coast weather anymore. Despite its persistence, California has been flat out pounded by a series of unusually cold, wet storms. Usually april marks the end of the rainy season but all of the long range forecasts predict a continuation of this pattern for at least the next 10 days. To give an idea of how dramatic this is, some areas had around 50% of their average (july 1-june 30) rainfall going into March and it looks like the LA area may actually reach 'average' rainfall despite the bone-dry winter. Further north, conditions are even more dramatic with record breaking rains and high snow levels causing flooding.

Does anyone have theories as to why this weather pattern is occurring? It's no El Nino obviously, and i havent heard anything about strong MJO effects either, although i havent checked the most recent bulletin. In any event, this year in so-cal will be known as the year with two wet seasons (October was also quite wet) and a dry season in between them.
This shows a strong, deep warm-core cyclone developing in the South Indian Ocean in several days; it is currently labled as Invest 94S by NRL. Invest 93S, near Australia, has a TCFA issued on it by the JTWC; this says that it is a tropical storm (T2.5 = 35 kt).

Link
To Danm
I am not sure what Dr. Gray's opinion is regarding global warming, however, I think the truth lies somewhere in between since this is a very complex issue.

See my post on this
The Floridian and Bahamian systems are both just flare-ups of convection along a cold front. Almost certainly nothing.

There's nothing of interest in the Caribbean either...what are you talking about?
TO: hometownhero36547

No. The risk this year for your area (Area 3) that somewhere within that region will experience hurricane force or higher winds is about 13.5%.

United States Landfalling Hurricane Probability Project







http://www.e-transit.org/hurricane/welcome.html
No, I don't see a thing potentially tropical.
There is not the least bit of counterclockwise water vapor flow. If some large convection area were to develop, it would be taken east in a hurry as well.
Yea, I have to say I see nothing that looks even remotly possible for tropical development.

The stuff down by S. America...are you just referring to the big rain storms that the get everyday?
One Season at a time folks! Lets get through tornado season first then deal with the canes. Unfortunately, I feel they will both be memorable and in a bad way I'm afraid. And what's worse is that they kinda overlap. Not much time to catch your breath inbetween!
I pray everybody comes through it all ok. As much as it all is intensly facinating, I hate the distructive aspects as far as life and property. But by the same token, with all the interest and intence scrutiny & daily scientific advances, maybe many more lives can be saved through a little more awareness. Ultimately, it's up to the individual as to how he/she reacts to the warnings. Guess the best way to some it all up is to say "Heads Up Everybody!" Stay Aware & Prepare" May you all fare well this year.

Max
Day 2, SPC. Fabulous.

" PARTS OF BOTH NEB/IA AND THE ERN KS/OK AND WRN MO/AR AREAS MAY BE
UPGRADED TO HIGH RISK IN LATER OUTLOOKS IF MODEL GUIDANCE OVER THE
NEXT DAY CONTINUES TO SUGGEST A STRONG POTENTIAL FOR THE DEVELOPMENT
OF DANGEROUS WEATHER IN THESE AREAS.
"
For anyone who was paying attention to the GFS...it's no longer projecting a shallow wame core system in the Gulf like it had been for a few days now. We'll see if it shows back up, but it was a long shot from the start.
I think what the "public" needs to understand is that the probability of hurrican landfall (or other weather events) mean very little for a specific community or speck on the map...we are always preparing for the "last storm" which may or may not occur for years...they don't call these things "100 year storms" or "50 year storms" for nothing. Everyone gets excited when Dr. Gray and others make their pronouncements but, while the coast line is a probable target, specific communities cannot guage their vulnerability by those predictions. Here in Fort Lauderdale we are preparing for another Wilma--and of course that's a good thing...but the next Wilma could come in 2006 or in 2050 and there is just no way of knowing which it will be. There is little distance between "preparation" and "panic"...kind of similar to the attacks on 9/11...we spend a lot of time getting ready for the next 9/11 when the truth is that whatever is being planned by the bad guys may be very different than the attacks on that day. Learning from previous mistakes is great, but there is a danger in getting to focused what happened in New Orleans or Fort Lauderdale...next time it might be Richmond or Brunswick...
Link

Looks like something off Florida coast its 180hrs out but you never know looks like th makings of a tropical storm
Just noticed the same thing StormSurfer on the 06Z GFS and the 00Z MRF...I want to see some more consistent runs before I buy into this solution...way too early to say if this has tropical potential, however...
cyclonebuster - I'm having to agree with ForecasterColby, globalize and HurricaneMyles - all I'm seeing in that loop is typical rain storms and storms riding a front. Even though a person can't say "way too cold" definitively anymore (thanks to the Greek storms of 2005), they're also showing no signs of significant development OR rotation.

As the old people who sit around on their porches watching tornados like to say, "I've seen worse." (LOL And yes, we really do stand around on our porches watching funnel clouds develop around here - that's how everyone knows it's actually a tornado and not just the NWS blowing smoke. XD )

StormSurfer - That does look interesting, but like Randyman I'm going to run a few more models and watch for changes in the pattern before I get excited. 180hrs is a long way out.
By the way, the possible storm by Australia that I mentioned last night is now a 45 kt tropical storm:

another moderate risk of severe weather tomorrow
Day 2 outlook
My NWS is already saying that a significant severe weather outbreak is expected tommorow (you can also see my forecast by entering 63129 in the zipcode box).
In the South Indian Ocean, Hubert has now reached T3.5 (55 kts).
Hubert...nice name :)

I can see this doing the same madness we've seen previously in the S Hemisphere this year, it looks excellent.
The last 2 times we have been placed in a slight risk, we have ended up having a lot of severe weather in Indiana (though nothing in Plainfield). Last Friday there was an F-2 tornado that carved a path 17 miles long in Shelby County, destroying several homes, and damaging over a hundred others. On Sunday we had widespread wind damage, including "extensive damage" to the Regions Bank Tower in Downtown Indianapolis, caused by wind gusts in excess of 80 mph!!!

I personally believe that, despite being in only a "slight risk" area, we will see widespread severe weather in Central Indiana once again.
Yeah ~ if ya don't have a weather radio now is a good time to buy one... I can't believe the features these days. This one can hand crank for charging it's batterys, NOAA, VHF(audio) AM, FM, 2 lights, cell phone charger, a siren & a red flasher.

I don't see anything really developing in the 144hr range. 180hrs out is too far to even look at the models for something tropical right now.

NOAA put out an article on the Acidification of the oceans. Hightlights~

"The pH decrease is direct evidence of ocean acidification in the Pacific Ocean," said Feely. "These dramatic changes can be attributed, in most part, to anthropogenic CO2 uptake by the ocean over the past 15 years. This verifies earlier model projections that the oceans are becoming more acidic because of the uptake of carbon dioxide released as a result of fossil fuel burning."

"The effects of decreased calcification in microscopic algae and animals could impact marine food webs and, combined with other climatic changes in salinity, temperature and upwelled nutrients, could substantially alter the biodiversity and productivity of the ocean," Fabry said. "As humans continue along the path of unintended CO2 sequestration in the surface oceans, the impacts on marine ecosystems will be direct and profound."
Good afternoon Dr Masters and fellow weather geeks!!! Finally got caught up again and doesn't look good for anyone!

tornadoes all around my family in the Mid-south and we are probably going to be clobbered again this year with hurricanes!

but knowledge is better than ignorance any day!!!

you all have a good one and will take a peek back later.
Latest SST anomaly plot:



Only the Gulf Stream area looks much warmer than normal to me. You can really see La Niña, though.
Try again:

Oh, well...just click here. The system si blocking that one here.
Hi MichaelSTL and all!

Cyclone Hubert building off Australia, I've started a blog for this here, would appreciate your comments and expertise, as this is all rather new to me... Thanks :)
I don't remember seeing this research at time of publishing~ Link

Cool rain may cause tornadoes
HUNTSVILLE, Ala., April 4 (UPI) -- A University of Alabama-Huntsville study suggests cooling rain preceding some hurricanes' landfall may produce conditions favorable for tornadoes.

Researchers said the cooling rain might cause the hurricanes to rapidly weaken as they move inland, but that same cooling rain might also cause shallow warm and cold "fronts" within a hurricane system. And that would make it more likely for tornadoes to develop as the storm weakens.

"It's almost a case of pick your poison," said Kevin Knupp, a professor of atmospheric science and director of the severe weather research team at the university's Earth System Science Center. Knupp's team of scientists and students has recorded seven hurricanes and tropical storms since 1998.

The results of the research appeared in the January edition of the Journal of Atmospheric Sciences.
Skye,
good info.
thanks
Hurricanes suck. Period. Hard to say exactly what will transpire however I would like to think that reconstruction of homes and businesses will be better than in years past.
I still see crappy home construction on the treasure coast. one would think that after 2004-2005 people would wise up and spend the extra money to have a stronger home.