A LOLLYGAGGER OF A HURRICANE SEASON?

andrewraThe 2015 hurricane season forecasts are out (see  Weather Channel graphic below) and the consensus is that activity in the Atlantic Basin (Atlantic Ocean, Caribbean Sea, Gulf of Mexico) is going to be an underachiever.

So, what’s that mean for you if you live along or plan on visiting the Atlantic or Gulf Coast this summer?

Not much, it turns out.  The number of hurricanes and tropical storms that blossom in the Atlantic Basin has very little, if any, correlation to the number that actually hit the U. S.

MY NAME IS BUZZ. I’M A WEATHERHOLIC.

Me, when I actually earned money forecasting weather.   At The Weather Channel ca. 2008.

Me, when I actually earned money forecasting weather. At The Weather Channel ca. 2008.

My name is Buzz.

I’m a weatherholic.

There, I said it.

I’m supposed to be retired.  Kicking back.  Taking it easy.  Writing novels.

But no.  Every time “big weather” looms, I’m geeking out, studying progs, kibitzing with other “addicts,” and [GULP] making forecasts.

Why can’t I get this monkey off my back?  Well, I suppose part of it is just human nature.  Humans generally love competition.  Exhibit One: the Winter Olympics.

So what has competition to do with weather forecasting

DOES A HURRICANE DISASTER LOOM? WHY I’M WORRIED

When the great “Dixie Tornado Outbreak” of April 2011 ripped through the Deep South, I remember being absolutely appalled that over 300 lives were snuffed out.

How could that happen, I wondered, in this era of sophisticated weather prediction, detection and warning systems? You had to go back to 1936, into the “Dark Ages” (my term) of meteorology, to find a higher death toll in a multi-day outbreak: 419, Tupelo, Mississippi, to Gainesville, Georgia.

But back to 2011. Earlier that year, a violent twister snatched away 158 lives in Joplin, Missouri. Prior to that, the record holder for a single city was Woodward, Oklahoma: 181 deaths in 1947.