Antigua: Residents urged to adopt ‘hurricane strong’ approach

Antigua Observer:-  As residents prepare for what is being expected to be a near normal to above hurricane season, Climatologist Dale Destin is appealing to individuals to adopt a “hurricane strong” approach.

According to Destin, who stressed that preparedness is “key”, there are a number of steps that people should follow in order to be as resilient as possible to tropical cyclones.

“Some of those vital factors include the determination of one’s vulnerability, the development of an evacuation plan in the event it is needed, insurance coverage for property and home, assembling of a disaster supply kit to include food supply and medication, the strengthening of homes, and identifying a trusted source of information”, the climatologist attached to the Antigua Meteorological Service said.

The prediction for the 2018 Atlantic Hurricane season which runs from June 1 to November 30 is for 12 – 15 storms, 6-8 hurricanes and 3-5 major hurricanes.

Destin added that there’s “a 70 per cent likelihood that the number of named storms will range between 10 – 17, 4 – 10 hurricanes, and 1 – 4 major hurricanes.”

He also stated that these numbers are likely to decrease due to the tropical Atlantic Ocean being cooler than normal.

“Less cyclones will likely form and this could be trending towards an El Niño where the tropical pacific becomes warmer than usual.

“The bad news, is that these same factors which dampen hurricane activity will also dampen rainfall activity,” Destin added.

In 2017 there were 17 names storms, 10 hurricanes and six major hurricanes which ranked 223 on the accumulated cyclone energy, earning the title of the 7th most active hurricane

season on record for the Atlantic.

Early last week, Tropical Storm Alberto, a pre hurricane storm, brought mudslide and flooding to parts of the US.

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