Atmospheric science experts at Colorado State University have increased their forecast for the 2007 hurricane season, largely due to the rapid dissipation of El Niño conditions.
The Colorado team is now calling for a very active hurricane season, with landfall probabilities for the 2007 hurricane season well above their long-period averages.
According to CSU’s Philip J. Klotzbac and William M. Gray, there is a 74 percent probability that at least one major (Category 3,4 or 5) hurricane will make landfall somewhere along the U.S. coast.
The probability is 50 percent that one will hit the East Coast including the Florida Peninsula and 49 percent for the Gulf Coast from the Florida Panhandle westward to Brownsville.
The CSU team also says there is above-average risk that a hurricane will make landfall in the Caribbean.
“Information obtained through March 2007 indicates that the 2007 Atlantic hurricane season will be much more active than the average 1950-2000 season,” says the latest forecast.
They estimate that 2007 will have about 9 hurricanes (average is 5.9), 17 named storms (average is 9.6), 85 named storm days (average is 49.1), 40 hurricane days (average is 24.5), 5 intense (Category 3-4-5) hurricanes (average is 2.3) and 11 intense hurricane days (average is 5.0).
This early April forecast is based on a newly devised extended range statistical forecast procedure which utilizes 40 years of past global reanalysis data and is then tested on an additional 15 years of global reanalysis data.
They said they have increased their forecast from their early December prediction “due largely to the rapid dissipation of El Niño which has occurred over the past couple of months.”
This forecast is available at: http://hurricane.atmos.colostate.edu/Forecasts
Source: Colorado State University
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