Hurricane forecasters raise 2012 predictions
Hurricane Irene rages on August 25 in the Caribbean Sea.
June 1st, 2012
02:07 PM ET

Hurricane forecasters raise 2012 predictions

On the first day of the Atlantic hurricane season, forecasters at Colorado State University have increased their predictions for the number of named storms for the year but are still predicting a below-average number of storms.

Philip Klotzbach and William Gray of Colorado State University's Department of Atmospheric Science are predicting 13 named tropical storms for the season, an increase of three from their forecast released in April. They say five of those storms will be hurricanes (with maximum sustained winds of 74 mph or above), an increase from four hurricanes in their April forecast.

The forecast for a major hurricane, a Category 3, 4 or 5 storm with winds well above 100 mph, remains at two.

The probability of one major hurricane hitting any part of the U.S. coastline is 48%, they said. The average for the past century has been 52%.

The CSU forecasters note that the two May tropical storms we've seen this year, Alberto and Beryl, are included among the 13 predicted for the season. They said the fact that 2012 has seen two storms doesn't portend anything for the rest of the year.

"Pre-1 June activity has very little bearing on the rest of the hurricane season. The only two seasons on record with two named storms prior to 1 June were 1887 and 1908. While 1887 was a very active season, 1908 had average levels of activity. The last season with a U.S. landfall prior to 1 June was 1976, which was a relatively quiet season," the forecasters said.

On May 24, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration announced that it expected a near-normal Atlantic hurricane season, with nine to 15 named storms and four to eight hurricanes. NOAA expects one to three of the hurricanes to be major ones.

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Filed under: Hurricanes • Tropical weather • Weather
soundoff (105 Responses)
  1. UtahProf

    I don't see why anyone would be worried – these people can't even tell you if it is going to rain tomorrow ...

    June 1, 2012 at 2:58 pm | Report abuse |
    • lily

      Well duh... if you had to solve partial differential equations with initial conditions taken from weather stations, you wouldn't be very good either. I believe they are chaotic equations, which means the initial conditions determine practically everything about the outcome. Hence, if you could know the temperature, pressure, etc., at every single point in the US instantaneously, and solve the equations instantaneously, THEN you could predict exactly when it rained.

      Thank you physics programing class...

      June 1, 2012 at 3:23 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Booman

    I put full faith in the scientists from Colorado. If anyone knows about hurricanes, it is people in Colorado

    June 1, 2012 at 2:59 pm | Report abuse |
    • earthquakes_anyoneM

      I'm certain the Univesity of Florida can predict the number of earthquakes to hit California too.

      June 1, 2012 at 3:06 pm | Report abuse |
    • Moxie Man

      Well, there's a VERY GOOD reason they live in Colorado.

      June 1, 2012 at 3:11 pm | Report abuse |
    • Michael

      Right, Booman. Because good hurricane experts gather data by standing outside and looking at the sky, as opposed to analyzing data gathered via remote instrumentation.

      June 1, 2012 at 3:30 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Jeff Frank (R-Ohio) "Right Wing Insanity"

    CNN. On the first day of the Atlantic hurricane season, forecasters at Colorado State University have increased their predictions.
    J.F.Colorado State isn't located on the Atlantic coast.

    June 1, 2012 at 3:02 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Fast Fred

    They should put their money up. If their wrong they loose. Anyone can guess at it. In New Orleans our weather man said last night, not so bad this year. They get everyone all riled up.

    June 1, 2012 at 3:04 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Fupped Duck

    If only the weatherman said partly cloudy chance of showers, he would be correct most of the time.

    June 1, 2012 at 3:06 pm | Report abuse |
  6. JudgeDB

    You people are idiots. They change their predictions to UPDATE their model given new information. It is nothing like predicting something after it happens and trying to take credit for it. I don't care how stupid you are you should know the difference. The stupidity of these comments just highlight how horrible science education has become in US public schools.

    June 1, 2012 at 3:09 pm | Report abuse |
  7. bobcat (in a hat)©,

    A priest was preparing a man for his long journey into the night. Whispering firmly, the priest said, "Denounce the devil! Let him know how little you think of his evil." The dying man said nothing.

    The priest repeated his order. Still the dying man said nothing. The priest asked, "Why do you refuse to denounce the devil and his evil?" The dying man said, "Until I know where I'm heading, I don't think I ought to aggravate anybody."

    June 1, 2012 at 3:10 pm | Report abuse |
  8. earthquakes_anyone

    I have lived and worked in South Florida for 35 years. Guest who can predict better than the University of Colorado?

    It's rained today. Guest what – it is going to rain tomorrow.

    Bet me and see who wins?

    June 1, 2012 at 3:12 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Moxie Man

    To all those who complain about where the forecast is coming from:

    Colorado State has a renown meteorology program. It just happens that one of their profs is very knowledgeable about hurricanes. Why he works there rather than at a school in say along the Gulf Coast makes no sense. But that's why these forecasts come out of Colorado, 'cause that's where the expert happens to be.

    June 1, 2012 at 3:13 pm | Report abuse |
    • bobcat (in a hat)©,

      He teaches is Colorado because he likes to predict the hurricanes, but he doesn't want to have to face one. I do not fault him on that logic.

      June 1, 2012 at 3:23 pm | Report abuse |
    • earthquakes_anyone


      Respectively so, let us just face it. They are never right.

      June 1, 2012 at 4:02 pm | Report abuse |
  10. earthquakes_anyone

    The University of Nowhere has just extended Hurricane season to last from Jan 1st through Dec 31st.

    Winter will be cancelled for 2013.

    Arab Spring to last until 2016.

    Miami Heat win the NBA championship – eventually.

    June 1, 2012 at 3:18 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Rogelio

    Whats new? It's just a roll of the clouds. Survived Andrew under a bed with my roof gone. Fifi in Honduras on the South Shore. No CNN back in 1974 to see how many died during that storm. LOL

    June 1, 2012 at 3:21 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Just Me

    When they came out with the original numbers, I said "yeah...right." I live near the coast. The winter we had was extremely warmer than normal. Which in my calculations made the sea temp warmer which would mean that we would have more tropical systems. I don't remember ever having a winter as warm as we had this time. And...I never went to school for this stuff. Sometimes just common sense can push it along.

    June 1, 2012 at 3:23 pm | Report abuse |
  13. JS

    These 'forecasters' are so pathetic... they're not even worth reading

    June 1, 2012 at 3:26 pm | Report abuse |
  14. weathersage

    Long range weather forecasting is not in their expertise. Weather cannot be based soley on statistics. The forecasters are somewhat correct for 3-4 days and are paid handsomely. My colleagues have at times pinpointed a hurricane's landfall, most of our group can forecast when the weather is potent enough to be a storm or a strong or deadly storm. We don't need radar to see the weather, we have a system that gives results. However, once the storm is visible to the meteorologists they are very good at tracking it on radar. As a group we are working on tracking a hurricane once developed.

    June 1, 2012 at 3:26 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Gateaux

    Love it here in S/W CO. No tornados, no earthquakes, no hurricanes, no 100+ days, no carjacking, very little crime...mostly druggies and alcies.

    June 1, 2012 at 3:36 pm | Report abuse |
    • Potrzebie

      Weren't you guys on fire a couple of years ago?

      June 1, 2012 at 3:39 pm | Report abuse |
    • northern rockies

      they are on fire this year as well, major drought!

      June 1, 2012 at 3:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • Ranger

      I lived in Cortez for 10 years before moving the SE Louisiana

      June 1, 2012 at 3:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • blueyeddevil

      Will you adopt me? SW Florida has too many illegals, haitians, mosquitos, hurricanes, 90 straight days of 90+ degree temps, 90% humidity, old people that shouldn't be driving...I'm used to the druggies and alcoholics though.

      June 1, 2012 at 4:24 pm | Report abuse |
    • Steve

      No ocean views or 75F 6 months of the year either.

      June 1, 2012 at 5:14 pm | Report abuse |
    • Wilbur

      That's good, but wild fires can be a problem for you guys.

      June 1, 2012 at 5:21 pm | Report abuse |
    • driranek

      @Gateaux – Dunno about SW Colorado, but in NE Colorado there are hundreds of square miles of pine trees killed by the pine bark beetle just waiting for a spark... that'll make a hurricane look like a warm summer rain.

      June 1, 2012 at 5:35 pm | Report abuse |
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