April 2011 Hurricane Season Forecast

AccuWeather, Dr. William M. Gray and Dr. Philip J. Klotzbach (Colorado State University), and Tropical Storm Risk have issued their April forecast. Keep in mind this is very preliminary at this time as things change.

Tropical Storm/Hurricane/Major Hurricane ACE=Accumulated Cyclone Energy ACE/Storm

15/8/3 ACE: None

AccuWeather predicts that the Upper Texas Coast and Southwest Louisiana could see an early threat of tropical weather.

Tropical Storm Risk
14/8/4 ACE: 124
Tropical Storm Risk predicts that the United States is at higher risk for landfall.

Colorado State University
16/9/5 ACE: 160

The Colorado State University thinks the upcoming 2011 season’s analogs are 1955, 1996, 1999, 2006, and 2008, which I would of likely thought of. I would of included 1985 and 1989 because they had La Ninas and were weakening, but they were during the cooler phase of the Atlantic. All the analogs were in warmer phase of the Atlantic.

AccuWeather, Tropical Storm Risk, and Colorado State University predict a more active season. None predict any 2011 to be more active than last year’s season, which was one of the most active on record besides 2005, 1933, 1995, and 1887. I do not think this upcoming season will be as active as 2010. Also, they predict higher risk for landfall for America, especially the Western Gulf of Mexico. Frankly, I do not like to make prediction on where landfall will happen this early in the season. I think it is rather irresponsible to make prediction on which area are at higher risk for landfall. I think the whole basin is at equal risk for landfall. However, in the analogs, 1999 and 2008 were not good for Texas. 1999 had Hurricane Bret making landfall on South Texas as a major hurricane. 2008 had Hurricane Dolly, Tropical Storm Edouard, and lastly Ike make landfall on Texas within a two month period from July to September. Also, Edouard and Ike made landfall within a few weeks. 2008 was like 1989 when two hurricanes, Chantal and Jerry, and one tropical storm, Allison make landfall on the Upper Texas Coast. However, that occurred in a four month period from June to October.

1955 12/9/6 199 16.6
1996 13/9/6 166 12.8
1999 12/8/5 177 14.8
2006 10/5/2 78 7.8
2008 16/8/5 144 9

I personally like using analogs because they can helps us predict what the season could be like in terms of how many storms form and make landfall. It is not 100 percent accurate of course because there are so many variables at work. However, it is a useful tool to predict what type of season it maybe like. I believe that you can use history to predict the future.

12.6/7.8/4.8 152.8 12.2
13/8/5 153 12.2

12/8/5 166 12.8

Standard Deviation
2.2/1.6/1.6 46.3 3.7

I would not rule out El Nino developing, like what happened in 2006. I remember 2006 being predicted as an active season on heels of the hyperactive 2005 season. Many computer models forecast that La Nina will warm to either Neutral or even El Nino in 2011. If El Nino was to develop, it could lead to a less active season. However, I think we will be Neutral by the time the season is at its peak. Also, keep in mind, it is hard to predict when El Nino or La Nina. I personally do not think 2006 is an analog year for 2011.

What is my prediction for this season?
13 to 16 named storms, likely 15 named storms
6 to 9 hurricanes, likely 8 hurricanes
3 to 5 major hurricanes with 4 major hurricanes
ACE is 155 to 195 with ACE likely of 160 to 175.

I think the 2011 season could be an active one. Regardless, we should not let our guards down. It just takes one. I will issue another forecast on June 1, 2011.


2 thoughts on “April 2011 Hurricane Season Forecast

  1. My prediction is an ACE number less than 155. I do not try to predict the actual number of named storns and so on. Tropical Storm Risk’s ACE of 124 is too low, given their predictions of 8 hurricanes, four major. AccuWeather’s 15/8/3 would indicate an ACE closer to yours and Colorado State (CSU). The inconsistances between your rather close predictions of named storms and so on and the ACE numbers illustrates the problem in forecasting anything besides ACE numbers. Here are the five forecasts, starting with NOAA that is all over the place.
    15/8/4/160 to 175
    My prediction for 2011 is an ACE of 110 to 150 with 130 likely.
    Actually I want to predict a lower number but these five predictions (except the inconsiatant ACE of 124) scare me.
    Ernest F. Cooke, Professor of Marketing, Loyola University Maryland

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