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Forecasting a hurricane's path has improved

12:30 PM, Aug 23, 2012   |    comments
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When you wonder where a hurricane is going ... don't.

When you wonder how strong it will be ... come back for updates.
I would so much rather be hit by a hurricane than an earthquake or a tornado.

With an earthquake ... no warning.

With a tornado ... maybe 30 minutes.

With a hurricane ... up to five days!

The accuracy with which we can forecast where a hurricane is going to go has increased dramatically over the last 30 years.

30 years ago, a 24-hour forecast had an average error of 120 miles ... now, it's less than 50.

A three-day error has gone from more than 300 miles to 120.

And a five-day error is less than what the three-day error used to be.

In fact within two years, we will be giving out a seven-day forecast for where a tropical cyclone is going to go.
However, when it comes to intensity forecasting -- that is how strong the tropical cyclone will it be when it arrives -- we have not improved at all in the last 30 years.

That is not me being critical -- it is what the world's best intensity forecaster says about current science.

So feel confident days in advance about where a hurricane is headed. Just make sure you check out the updates to find out just how strong the storm is going to be.

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