Thursday, May 27, 2010

Comparing NOAA's Hurricane Forecast to Others

It seems I've been blogging for months about hurricane season predictions and for just as long I've been mentioning the long-awaited official forecast for the 2010 Atlantic season by NOAA's Climate Prediction Center. All the hype was built up leading up to the expected release of their forecast last Thursday, just to find out it was delayed until today.

So alas, here it is – the official big daddy prediction we've been waiting for...

NOAA is predicting 14 to 23 named storms to form in the Atlantic Ocean, Caribbean Sea and Gulf of Mexico. Of those named storms, 8 to 14 should become hurricanes, including 3 to 7 majors. As there are only 21 names dedicated to storms in any given season, if we do reach the higher end of their forecast, we could easily push into the Greek alphabet, which has only happened once before in 2005

I'm not going to spend time reasoning why they are predicting such an active season – I think I beat that dead horse already! Here are a couple links to previous blog posts that touch on the predictors forecasters look at when issuing these seasonal hurricane forecasts:

NOAA's hurricane forecasts have been accurate in 5 out of the 10 years in this decade. Their prediction was too low in 4 years, and too high in just one year: 2006. 8 of the 10 years in the decade saw above-average activity.

For reference, here are the other predictions I've already blogged about:

Good thing I grabbed hold of some extra dry erase markers and sticky hurricane symbols for my tracking chart – looks like I'm surely going need them!