The 2010 Atlantic hurricane season is likely to produce 10 hurricanes, five of them major, the Colorado State University hurricane forecasting team said Wednesday, increasing a previous estimate for a “very active” season. The report confirms earlier warnings that more hurricanes were due [See IJ web site – https://www.insurancejournal.com/news/national/2010/05/27/110222.htm].
The leading storm research team founded by hurricane forecast pioneer William Gray said there was a 76 percent probability of a major hurricane making landfall along the U.S. coast, whether the U.S. East Coast or the Gulf Coast, compared with the last-century average of 52 percent.
The CSU team saw a 51 percent chance that a major hurricane would make landfall on the U.S. East Coast, including the Florida Peninsula, and a 51 percent chance that one would hit the Gulf Coast, from the Florida Panhandle to Brownsville, Texas.
They also forecast that the six-month season beginning on June 1 would likely see 18 named tropical storms.
The scientists increased their forecast from an April 7 prediction of 15 named storms, eight hurricanes and four major hurricanes.
“We have increased our forecast from early April, due to a combination of a transition from El Nino to current neutral conditions and the continuation of unusually warm tropical Atlantic sea surface temperatures,” Gray said in a statement detailing expected weather and sea conditions that will favor hurricane formation. “We anticipate a well above-average probability of United States and Caribbean major hurricane landfall,” he added.
The extreme hurricane season this year is seen posing a particular threat to ongoing efforts to contain and clean up the massive oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, and also to around 1.5 million homeless survivors of Haiti’s Jan. 12 earthquake who are camping out in the streets under tents and tarpaulins.
(Reporting by Pascal Fletcher; Editing by Vicki Allen)
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