Weather Research CenterTM
3227 Audley Houston, Texas 77098 Phone: 713-529-3076 Fax: 713-528-3538 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
For Immediate Release
November 8, 2001
For Information contact:
J. Lane DuBois-Freeman 713-529-3076
Weather Research Center’s 2001 Tropical Cyclone Predictions of Strike Probabilities Verifies.
Cuba had a 70% Chance of A Storm Making Landfall!
HOUSTON – According to meteorologist Jill F. Hasling and Dr. John C. Freeman of Weather Research Center, Cuba had a 70% chance of a experiencing a landfall of a tropical storm or hurricane. This verified with Hurricane Michelle ripping through Cuba in November. There also was a 55% chance of the Atlantic Basin having a November storm. This year there were 2 storms in November, Michelle and Noel
In April, meteorologists at Weather Research Center issued their prediction of the US coastlines with the highest risk of experiencing a tropical storm or hurricane this year. The west coast of Florida and the Louisiana to Alabama coast had the highest probability of experiencing a tropical storm or hurricane this year with a 70% chance. These forecasts verified with Tropical Storm Barry,
WRC meteorologists forecasted a high probability that a tropical storm or hurricane will make landfall somewhere on the Gulf Coast in the area from Louisiana to the Florida Keys. According to the Orbital Cyclone Strike Index [OCSI] developed at Weather Research Center; there is a 70% chance of a tropical storm or hurricane making landfall on that section of the Gulf Coast. There is a 60% chance that a tropical cyclone will make landfall somewhere on the east coast from Georgia to North Carolina. The Northeast Coast of the United States has a 50% chance of experiencing a tropical storm or hurricane in 2001. This verified with Tropical Storm Barry making landfall near the Alabama/Florida border and Tropical Storm Gabrielle making landfall on the West Coast of Florida.
A secondary prediction from the OCSI models is the prediction of the number of storms expected in the Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico. The outlook calls for nine named systems with six of these storms intensifying into hurricanes. So far this year there have been fourteen named storms with eight becoming hurricanes.
There is a 90% chance that one of these nine storms will intensify into a strong hurricane of category three or higher. This year there were four storms that made it to Category 3 or higher: Hurricane Erin, Felix, Iris, and Michelle.
The outlook calls for at least three of these storms to make landfall somewhere along the United States coast. This verified with Tropical Storm Allison making landfall on the Texas coast in June, tropical Storm Barry near Alabama and Tropical Storm Gabrielle on the west coast of Florida.
The OCSI model is based on the premise that there are orbital influences that are reflected in the
global circulation pattern on the sun and subsequently, the global circulation pattern of the earth.
The sun's circulation is tracked by the sun spot cycle. Using this solar cycle to make an index,
hurricane climatology has been summarized into an index called the OCSI. This index has been used since 1985 to make annual forecasts of which section of North America has the highest risk of experiencing a tropical storm or hurricane.
WRC meteorologist outlook for the 2002 Hurricane Season shows the west coast of Florida with the highest risk of 80% of a storm. The second highest risk is the Gulf Coast from Texas to Alabama which has a 60% chance of a tropical storm or hurricane making landfall. The OCSI is calling for 7 named storms in the Atlantic basin with 4 intensifying into hurricanes. Bermuda has a 50% chance of experiencing a storm. There is a 55% chance of a category 3 or higher hurricane somewhere in the Atlantic Basin. The outlook also shows there is a chance of a storm in May and a chance of a storm in November making for another long hurricane season. There is a 75% chance that three more storms will make landfall along the US coast. The Gulf of Mexico Oil Leases have a 81% chance of experience a tropical storm or hurricane.
In addition to its ongoing research, the Center also provides storm and hurricane information via the Internet through Storm Navigator. This service helps people navigate weather information on the Internet as well as providing detailed storm updates and related information. All of the Center's projections including past predictions can be found on the Internet, http://www.wxresearch.com/outlook.
Background on Researchers:
Jill F. Hasling and Dr. John C. Freeman are both Certified Consulting Meteorologist and Fellows of the American Meteorological Society. Both are researchers and founding directors of the Weather Research Center, which is a non-profit educational and research facility, based in Houston, Texas. Dr. Freeman has over 50 years of meteorological experience and Ms. Hasling has over 25 years experience. Both have been involved in tropical meteorology research and have
been working together on this forecast method since 1985.