Thursday, May 27, 2010

NOAA 2010 Eastern Pacific Hurricane Season Outlook

NOAA 2010 Hurricane Season Outlooks (May)

2010 Eastern Pacific Hurricane Prediction

Every May the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Climate Prediction Center (CPC) issues a preliminary Eastern Pacific hurricane season outlook.  There are no updates planned for this outlook. July - September are the peak months of the season.    NOAA Press Release

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The outlook is produced in collaboration with scientists from the National Hurricane Center (NHC), and the Hurricane Research Division (HRD). The Eastern Pacific hurricane region covers the eastern North Pacific Ocean east of 140oW north of the equator.

Eastern Pacific Hurricane Season 
May 15 - November 30

For 2010, the outlook calls for a 75% chance of a below normal season, a 20% chance of a near normal season, and only a 5% chance of an above normal season. An average Eastern Pacific hurricane season features approximately 15 named storms (maximum sustained surface winds between 39-73 mph), with nine of those becoming hurricanes (maximum sustained surface winds of at least 74 mph) and four becoming major hurricanes (maximum sustained surface winds exceeding 111 mph, categories 3-5 on the Saffir-Simpson hurricane scale).

Measuring total seasonal activity: The Accumulated Cyclone Energy (ACE) index

An important measure of the total overall seasonal activity is the NOAA Accumulated Cyclone Energy (ACE) index, which accounts for the intensity and duration of named storms and hurricanes during the season.  According to NOAA’s hurricane season classifications, an ACE value above 117% of the 1950-2000 median reflects an above-normal season. An ACE value above 175% of the median reflects an exceptionally active (or hyperactive) season.

Allowing for uncertainties, NOAA estimates a 70% chance of occurrence for each of the following ranges of activity this season:

  • 9-15 named storms
  • 4-8 hurricanes
  • 1-3 major hurricanes
  • An ACE range 45%-95% of the median

This outlook is general guide to the expected overall activity during the upcoming hurricane season. It is not a seasonal hurricane landfall forecast, and it does not predict levels of activity for any particular region.

The climate factors expected to guide the 2010 eastern Pacific hurricane season are 1) a continuation of conditions that have been suppressing activity since 1995, and 2) either ENSO-neutral or La Niña conditions during the peak months (July-September) of the season, with La Niña becoming increasingly likely.  (see ENSO forecast models)

As a service to my readers, we will monitor tropical storms and provide updates. Starting June 1st, we'll add the RSS feeds so that you'll be able to get up to the minute forecasts and advisories from NOAA. Cruise lines monitor tropical storms and may provide advisories of their own. Those will also be shared with you.

Related Links

NOAA Predicts Below Normal Eastern Pacific Hurricane Season
2010 Eastern Pacific Hurricane Outlook
Colorado State University
Climate Prediction Center (CPC)
NOAA/ National Weather Service
WMO Severe Weather Info Centre
National Hurricane Center (NHC)
NWS Regional Offices and Centers
Hurricane Preparedness
Realtime monitoring of tropical East Pacific conditions

More links and information about tropical storms and other weather conditions can be found in the Weather tab above.

Related Blog Posts

Above Average 2010 Hurricane Forecast
NOAA 2010 Atlantic Hurricane Season Outlook
NOAA 2010 Eastern Pacific Hurricane Season Outlook
NOAA 2010 Central Pacific Hurricane Prediction
Hurricane Hazards - Inland Flooding
Huricane Hazards - High Winds
Hurricane Hazards - Storm Surge
Hurricane Preparedness Week 2010
Travel With Protection Against Unexpected

Hurricane Preparedness Week  - May 23 - 29, 2010

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