NCSU Team: Active Hurricane Season on Tap

Posted April 9, 2008

— Researchers at North Carolina State University have predicted an active 2008 hurricane season, but said the number of storms with the potential to make landfall is close to an average year, they said.

Lian Xie, a professor in the Department of Marine, Earth and Atmospheric Sciences at N.C. State, and graduate student Elinor Keith said Wednesday that their forecasts call for 13 to 15 named storms in the Atlantic Ocean, the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean Sea. Six to eight of the storms could become hurricanes, they said.

The Atlantic hurricane season runs from June 1 through Nov. 30.

The southeast coast of the U.S. could see one or two named storms make landfall, and there is a better than 50 percent chance that at least one of the storms will be a hurricane, Xie said.

The Gulf of Mexico is most likely to see storm activity this year, he said, predicting two to four named storms, including one hurricane, were likely to make landfall along the Gulf Coast.

Xie’s methodology evaluates data from the last 100 years on Atlantic Ocean hurricane positions and intensity, as well as other variables like weather patterns and sea-surface temperatures, in order to predict how many storms will form and where they will make landfall.

Colorado State University researcher William Gray also predicted Wednesday that rising water temperatures in the Atlantic would bring a "well above average" storm season this year, including four major storms.

Gray's forecast calls for 15 named storms in the Atlantic in 2008 and says there's a better than average chance that at least one major hurricane will hit the U.S.

The 2007 Atlantic season saw 15 named storms, six of which became hurricanes. Two were major storms.

"The Atlantic is a bit warmer than in the past couple of years," said Phil Klotzbach, a member of Gray's forecast team. "That is something we would like to keep an eye on."

Gray had projected seven hurricanes with three major storms in a preliminary forecast in December.

One of the most closely watched hurricane forecasters, Gray has been issuing hurricane predictions for more than 20 years. But he and others have been criticized in recent years for forecasts that were off the mark.

Gray's team says precise predictions are impossible, and the warnings raise awareness of hurricanes.

"We have not been ashamed of our forecast failures. It is the nature of seasonal forecasting to sometimes be wrong," Klotzbach said in a telephone interview from the Bahamas, where the team announced the forecast at a weather conference.

U.S. government forecasters issue their seasonal outlook in late May.


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  • carolinagirl75 Apr 9, 2008

    William Gray has been wrong several years running, yet they still quote him.

  • Crayzee1 Apr 9, 2008

    yeah right, just like laast year. YOu can predict for that everyone and sooner or later you are right!

  • ty will belabor a point Apr 9, 2008

    Yawn. We live on a semi tropical coast. Hurricanes cycle. They're either going to come or they aren't. Every year we hear how this is going to be the worst on record! Whatever. Bottom line, the risk of a hurricane is something we all should be prepared for. This hype is just put out by GW alarmists to incite the masses and put out by the media to generate eyeballs. Relax, have a pina colada and make sure you've got a generator in the garage.

  • bkahuna Apr 9, 2008

    And I predict Christmas will be in December this year....what do I win? I need a job as a meteorologist.

  • whatelseisnew Apr 9, 2008


    I don't buy most of the GW stuff. I am trying to figure out how to get in on the scam of selling carbon credits. I did hit on one idea. I have many oxygen producing, carbon storing devices on my property. I intend to propose that for each of these devices I be paid by the county and city for helping to improve the environment and for helping reduce ozone days. I am thinking 100 dollars per month per device is a fair price. What do think, do I have a winner idea here? Maybe I can get on to the Al Gore train as a subsidiary corp to help him gouge the suckers out there.

  • Johnny Da Lounge Apr 9, 2008

    According to the "geniuses", they're maybe some hurricanes during hurricane season.

  • FloydTurbo Apr 9, 2008

    Isn't this a repeat from last year? .... and an advance look at next year's prediction ???

    Chicken Little Algore and his disciples flapping their wings to stir up a fuss. "Quick ... Get Rid Your SUV so we don't have another Katrina ..."

    Not unlike Charlie Meeker & His Water Crisis ... oh me, oh my !!!

  • MrPearce Apr 9, 2008

    hi_i_am_wade: I am convinced GW has become a religion. There is no way to prove it wrong. Any wobble in the weather, and GW is reigning down our carbonaceous iniquities upon us, obviously.

    GW can neither be proven or disproven, and as such, we should drop it. Even if all of us gave up carbon today and went and lived in the woods, it wouldn't do a thing for the weather.

    Also, a good heavy volcanic eruption would quickly eradicate our "improvement".

    I am not knocking the fact we should get off foreign energy permanently, but doing it because the sky is falling will lead us to do things incorrectly.

  • KChan725 Apr 9, 2008

    Didn't they say this for the lat TWO years and the last two years we've had bupkiss?!

  • groovyguru Apr 9, 2008

    What, 112/b oil isn't high enough?