My Thoughts on Technology and Jamaica: 2014 Atlantic Hurricane Season looking Fairly Quiet - How Hurricanes are formed as Hurricane making Landfall equals Disaster

Saturday, May 24, 2014

2014 Atlantic Hurricane Season looking Fairly Quiet - How Hurricanes are formed as Hurricane making Landfall equals Disaster

“Thanks to the environmental intelligence from NOAA’s network of earth observations, our scientists and meteorologists can provide life-saving products like our new storm surge threat map and our hurricane forecasts”

NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) Administrator Dr. Kathryn Sullivan commenting on the 2014 Atlantic Hurricane Season

Looks like we’re in for a wild ride, Jamaican and Caribbean people! And here was I thinking that the spreading Chikungunya Virus Epidemic in the Caribbean was bad enough, as it’s yet to be reported in Jamaica as I’d predicted in my blog article entitled “Ministry of Health gearing up for Chikungunya Virus Epidemic - Aedes aegypti Mosquito loves the French as it Island-Hops to Jamaica”.

This 2014 Hurricane Season, which begins on Sunday June 1st 2014 and ends six months later in November 2014, isn’t here yet, but looks like another wild ride as stated in “Near normal or below normal hurricane season predicted”, published Friday, May 23, 2014 3:08 PM, The Jamaica Observer. You can read the full prediction and get important updates direct from NOAA via the article “El Niño expected to develop and suppress the number and intensity of tropical cyclones”, published May 22, 2014, NOAA News.

It’s looking a lot calmer than last year’s Hurricane Season, which Neville Bell of Television Jamaica Fame had spoken of, naming Hurricane Barbara to start things off rolling as stated in my blog article entitled “Neville Bell Hurricane Barbara the first for Atlantic and Pacific Hurricane Season starting Saturday June 1 2012 - Caribbean theatre for the Class of Hurricanes in Monsters University”.

The names to be used for this year’s 2014 Hurricane Season are as follows and are actually based on names handed down by the National Hurricane Center:

1.      Arthur
2.      Bertha
3.      Cristobal
4.      Dolly
5.      Edouard
6.      Fay
7.      Gonzalo
8.      Hanna
9.      Isaias
10.  Josephine
11.  Kyle
12.  Laura
13.  Marco
14.  Nana
15.  Omar
16.  Paulette
17.  Rene
18.  Sally
19.  Teddy
20.  Vicky
21.  Wilfred

According to NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) Administrator Dr. Kathryn Sullivan, this years is below or just average in terms of Hurricanes expected to form in the Atlantic Hurricane Region. Those odds, for the bookies reading my blog and getting ready to place their bets, read as thus:

1.      50% chance of a below-normal season
2.      40% chance of a near-normal season
3.      10% chance of an above-normal season
4.      70% likelihood of Hurricanes in the Caribbean this year

This Region is defined as:

1.      North Atlantic Ocean
2.      Caribbean Sea
3.      Gulf of Mexico

In terms of the number of Hurricanes, this translates as thus:

1.      8-13 named Storms
2.      3-6 hurricanes 
3.      1-2 Category 3, 4 or 5 hurricanes (winds of 111 mph or higher)

For those that are non-weather oriented, these Atmospheric anomalies translate as follows:

1.      Storms have winds of 39 mph or higher
2.      Hurricanes have winds of 74 mph or higher
3.      Category 3, 4 or 5 hurricanes start at wind speeds of winds of 111 mph or higher

The video below best illustrates how a Hurricane is formed very clearly, since as far as I'm concerned as a Jamaican, given the state of our Infrastructure, they ALL mean I have to batten down and prepare for Islandwide power Cuts.

El Nino is on our Side – Takes only one Hurricane making Landfall to cause a Disaster

The reason for the below-par Hurricane Season?

Blame the El Nino effect, which is apparently on our side. This as it makes Hurricanes more difficult to form via the following actions

1.      Strong Shear Winds that tear Storm Cell formation apart, making hurricane formation off the coast of Africa difficult
2.      Strengthen the Trade Winds coming off Africa
3.      Reduce the warm water effect off the coast of Africa

So El Nino is a good little boy this year, apparently to quote NOAA Administrator Dr. Kathryn Sullivan: “And even though we expect El Niño to suppress the number of storms this season, it’s important to remember it takes only one land falling storm to cause a disaster”.

True indeed! Right now I’m in Kingston. I’ve already begun tracking the Hurricane formation and making plans to go home to Milk River, Clarendon instead of risk being Trapped in Kingston. Folks, be prepared!

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