The Colorado State University forecast team, led by Dr. Philip J. Klotzbach, predicts an above average 2010 Atlantic basin hurricane season.
The team has increased its forecast from December 2009 and now anticipates 15 named storms forming in the Atlantic basin between June 1 and Nov. 30.
However a senior Meteorologist with our weather partner Weather.com says these predictions are “useless”.
Eight of the storms are predicted to become hurricanes, and of those eight, four are expected to develop into intense or major hurricanes (Saffir/Simpson category 3-4-5) with sustained winds of 111 mph or greater.
“We expect current moderate El Nino conditions to transition to neutral conditions by this year’s hurricane season.
The predicted weakening of El Nino conditions combined with a very strong anomalous warming of the tropical Atlantic are the primary reasons why we are increasing our forecast.”
Here at weather.com and The Weather Channel we offer a position on hurricane season outlooks based on three points:
A few years ago, TWC senior meteorologist Stu Ostro wrote about his strong feelings on hurricane season outlooks. Stu calls them flat out “useless”.
There there is the part of the CSU seasonal outlook that the general public are interested in most – where will the hurricanes hit?
Probabilities for at least 1 major hurricane landfall by coastal area:
Entire U.S. coastline: 69% (average for the last century is 52%)
U.S. East coast including Florida peninsula: 45% (average for last century is 31%)
Gulf Coast from the Florida Panhandle westward to Brownsville, TX: 44% (average for last century is 30%)
Unfortunately, this landfall probability forecast is HIGHLY unreliable and there is little skill in this area.