SINT MAARTEN/CARIBBEAN – With the start of the 2016 Atlantic Hurricane Season less than two weeks away, Antigua climatologist Dale Destin is calling on residents to prepare for the season and to do so early.
Dale said the best time to prepare is when there is no storm system around. The stress level of preparation is low and is more able to think clearly.
The National Emergency Operations Centre of the Cayman Islands already started its annual hurricane exercise last week to test preparedness of emergency response groups.
Cayman emergency responders are preparing for an active hurricane season due to the fact that El Nino, a weather system which hampered the development of storm systems in 2015 is expected to diminish and lead to a La Nina which allows the Atlantic to become active with powerful storms.
In the meantime, tropical development remains possible this coming weekend from The Bahamas to the Eastern Gulf Of Mexico, according to Crown Weather.
“An upper level trough of low pressure is expected to track across the eastern United States and the western Atlantic over the next few days. This trough of low pressure is forecast by all of the forecast guidance to lift out and be replaced by a upper level ridge of high pressure by the middle to end of next week. It is expected, however, that a piece of energy will be left behind in the Bahamas by about Friday of next week where it will need to be monitored very closely for signs of tropical development next weekend in an area that stretches from the Bahamas westward to the eastern Gulf of Mexico.
“All of the latest model guidance, including the GFS, European and Canadian models, shows that there seems to be an increasing chance that we may see an area of disturbed weather form over the Bahamas during next weekend. From there, the GFS model guidance forecasts this disturbed weather will strengthen into a tropical cyclone in the eastern Gulf of Mexico on Memorial Day and then meander around the Gulf of Mexico throughout the first 4 or 5 days of June.
“The European model guidance forecasts any area of disturbed weather may track across the Florida Peninsula on Memorial Day and become a broad area of low pressure in the north-eastern Gulf of Mexico by May 31st.
“The Canadian model guidance forecasts that an area of low pressure may form in the northern Bahamas next Sunday and then track north-north-eastward and strengthen into a tropical storm by Memorial Day as it tracks across eastern North Carolina.
“Turning to the ensemble guidance, the GFS ensemble model guidance forecasts low pressure to form near Grand Bahama Island next Sunday. A majority of the ensemble members forecast that this low pressure system may track north-north-westward just off of Florida’s east coast on Memorial Day. Ultimately, a majority of the GFS ensemble guidance members forecasts this system will come ashore along the South Carolina coast on May 31st. It should be noted that a few of the GFS ensemble guidance members show a track into the eastern Gulf of Mexico rather than a track towards the US Southeast Atlantic coast.
“Here Are My Thoughts: It needs to be emphasized that we should not focus on any one particular model guidance forecast because these forecasts will change in the coming days. Instead, we need to focus on the upcoming weather pattern change into one that features a upper level high pressure system over the north-eastern United States and a piece of energy that sits over the Bahamas next weekend. This type of weather pattern has, in the past, produced tropical systems and this is what I’m looking at for next weekend rather than concentrating on any one particular model forecast.
“At this point, I think that at the minimum we will see an area of disturbed weather persist over the Bahamas and parts of the Florida Peninsula starting around next Saturday and then remain over the Bahamas and the Florida Peninsula through next Sunday and Memorial Day. Whether this area of disturbed weather strengthens into a tropical depression or a tropical storm remains to be seen and it is something that will need to be monitored closely.”
Crown Weather puts development between 10 and 20 percent chance that we will see a tropical depression or a tropical storm form somewhere between the Bahamas and the eastern Gulf of Mexico between May 28th and June 1st. “If we continue to see consistency in the weather data that supports tropical development over the Memorial Day weekend, then the chances for tropical development will be increased,” Crown Weather concludes.
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