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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    ‘Extreme’ hurricane season forecast

    SAN FRANCISCO — This year’s Atlantic hurricane season could be “”extreme”” with several major storms hitting the U.S., AccuWeather.com meteorologists warned Wednesday.

    “”This year has the chance to be an extreme season,”” saidJoe Bastardi, chief long-range meteorologist and hurricane forecaster at AccuWeather.com, said in a statement. “”It is certainly much more like 2008 than 2009 as far as the overall threat to the United States’ East and Gulf coasts.””

    Last year was calm, but in 2008 Hurricane Ike hit a 500-mile stretch of coastline in Louisiana and Texas, triggering insured losses of roughly $11.5 billion. That made it the third most expensive U.S. hurricane, after Katrina in 2005 and Andrew in 1992.

    The 2010 hurricane season could be much more active than 2009, with “”above-normal threats”” on the U.S. coastline, AccuWeather.com said Wednesday.

    Bastardi forecast seven landfalls. Five will be hurricanes and two or three of the hurricanes will be major landfalls for the U.S.

    The meteorologist said he expects 16 to 18 tropical storms in total, 15 of which would be in the western Atlantic or Gulf of Mexico and therefore a threat to land. In a typical season, there are about 11 named storms and two or three hit the coast of the U.S., AccuWeather.com noted.

    Bastardi said he’s concerned about this season partly because the El Nino climate pattern is rapidly weakening and the ocean is warmer in the Atlantic, which could give storms more energy.

    The Atlantic hurricane season officially begins June 1 and continues through Nov. 30.

     

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