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Vigilance Urged Amid Active Hurricane Season Predictions


The World Meteorological Organization (WMO) Deputy Secretary-General Ko Barrett has urged special vigilance during the upcoming 2024 Atlantic Hurricane Season amid predictions of 17 to 25 named storms.

The average is fourteen.

The US National Oceanic and Atmosphere Administration (NOAA) expects 8 to 13 storms to become hurricanes, including 4 to 7 major ones.

The WMO Deputy Secretary-General emphasized the unique factors contributing to this year’s active hurricane season.

They include near-record ocean heat in the region where Atlantic hurricanes form and the shift to La Niña conditions.

Barrett noted that it takes just one landfalling hurricane to set back years of socio-economic development.

The senior WMO official recalled that Hurricane Maria in 2017 cost Dominica 800% of its Gross Domestic Product.

However, she noted that early warnings by the WMO community and improved disaster risk management have dramatically reduced fatalities.

Nevertheless, the WMO Secretary-General declared that Small Island Developing States in the Caribbean still suffer disproportionately.

“This is why WMO and its partners have prioritized early warning action in small islands under the international Early Warnings For All initiative,” Barrett said.

 She disclosed that the WMO will showcase the need for more coordinated and targeted investment in early warning systems at the International Conference on Small Island Developing States (SIDS).

Antigua and Barbuda will host the 27-30 May 2024 event to assess SIDS’ ability to achieve sustainable development.

The Atlantic hurricane season lasts from 1 June to 30 November.

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  1. With the first strong tropical waves traversing the Atlantic, this gives us clues to what this season might bring. If these systems continue with this magnitude and path, the islands could be in for some trouble this year. Vigilance and preparation is key to ensure you are not severely affected by a storm. If you are in low lying flood prone and vulnerable areas this is even more important for your safety and wellbeing, keep the water ways clear, tidy up all loose branches and debris, and have a plan in case something happens.


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