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Old 04-04-2006, 13:36   #1
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Experts forecast another active Atlantic hurricane season

Forecasters warned that the upcoming Atlantic cyclonic season would again be highly active, with a total of 17 tropical storms, including nine hurricanes, likely to form.
Of those hurricanes, five should be intense, meaning they will reach or exceed Category 3 on the five-level Saffir-Simpson hurricane intensity scale, said leading experts William Gray and Philip Klotzbach of Colorado State University.

While the numbers are above the historical average, they remain below last year's record of 26 tropical storms and 14 hurricanes, seven of them intense.
The study said there was a 98 percent chance of a hurricane making landfall in the United States, with an 88 percent likelihood of a Category 1 or 2 striking land and an 81 percent chance of a Category 3, 4 or 5 slamming ashore.
But Gray said it was unlikely the United States would be as hard hit as it has been in the past two years -- each of which saw four major hurricanes slam ashore.
"Even though we expect to see the current active period of Atlantic major hurricane activity to continue for another 15 to 20 years, it is statistically unlikely that the coming 2006 and 2007 hurricane seasons, or the seasons that follow, will have the number of major hurricane US landfalls as we have seen in 2004-2005."
Experts believe the latest record hurricane season was part of a cycle where periods of relative calm alternate with decades of intense activity.
Some scientists also believe global warming plays a crucial role by further increasing the temperature of warm ocean waters that provide fuel to the hurricanes.
But the Colorado State University study played down the theory.
"No credible observational evidence is available or likely will be available in the next few decades which will directly associate global surface temperature change to changes in global frequency and intensity," it said. The hurricane season officially runs from June 1 to November 30.
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Old 04-04-2006, 13:38   #2
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Expert: 64 Percent Chance Of Major East Coast Storm Strike

Expert: 64 Percent Chance Of Major East Coast Storm Strike


POSTED: 8:10 am EDT April 4, 2006
UPDATED: 3:31 pm EDT April 4, 2006

The chance of a major hurricane strike this year along the east coast of the United States is significantly higher than an average season, according to the nation's most prominent hurricane forecaster.

"(Dr. William Gray) is saying that the chance of a major hurricane strike along the east coast is at 64 percent this year," Local 6 meteorologist Larry Mowry said. "An average season calls for only a 31 percent chance of a strike in this area. So, he has upped the chance of a major hurricane hitting the east coast."


Gray also put out a prediction for the Gulf Coast for 2006.

"He said there is a chance of a major hurricane striking the Gulf Coast," Mowry said. "That percentage chance is at 47 percent."

Concerning the amount of hurricanes, Gray stuck with projections from his December 2005 forecast.

"He is calling for 17 tropical storms and in an average season we get 10," Mowry said. "He is calling for nine hurricanes and the average is six. And five major hurricanes is what he is calling for and the average is just over two."

Last year, the Atlantic Basin had a record 27 tropical storms -- so many that the National Hurricane Center had to turn to the Greek alphabet for names.



"(Dr. William Gray) is saying that the chance of a major hurricane strike along the East Coast is at 64 percent this year," Local 6 meteorologist Larry Mowry said. "An average season calls for only a 31 percent chance of a strike in this area. So, he has upped the chance of a major hurricane hitting the East Coast."
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