With hurricane season less than a month away it’s time to really get thinking about the possibilities.
Any given year %
Take the yearly storm stats, basically the probabilities crunched down from more than a hundred years of storms for the central Gulf Coast from Iberia Parish, LA to Walton County, FL.
In that area, in any given year, there’s better than a 1 in 2 (56%) chance of seeing a named storm make landfall. For a hurricane, it’s a one in three (33%) chance. For a major hurricane it’s about a one in six chance (17%) of one of those making landfall. These numbers drive home how historically vulnerable our area is to tropical weather.
Those are the historical statistics, but what are the forecasters predicting for this year?
We have forecasts from Colorado State, TSR, which is a risk assessment from the insurance agencies, and North Carolina State University. All those forecasts are mostly right in line with the average which is 12 named storms, 6 hurricanes, and 2 major hurricanes.
Why bother with these forecasts?
You may wonder why researchers go through this exercise with these sort of forecasts well in advance of a hurricane season. It’s something that is extremely complicated and hard to predict.
Mainly, it’s a research tool. It helps the forecasters learn, even failure can teach them vital lessons when it comes to the seasonal forecasts. And they still do better than just going off the average every single year.
It also brings awareness to the public. It gets the information out there and it gets people thinking about hurricane season before it arrives, which is the best time to prepare and is exactly what we should all be doing.