Global warming and the frequency of intense Atlantic hurricanes: model results

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 1:37 PM GMT on April 05, 2010

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Could global warming increase wind shear over the Atlantic, potentially leading to a decrease in the frequency of Atlantic hurricanes? There is a growing consensus among hurricane scientists that this is indeed quite possible. Two recent studies, by Zhao et al. (2009), "Simulations of Global Hurricane Climatology, Interannual Variability, and Response to Global Warming Using a 50-km Resolution GCM", and by Knutson et al. (2008), "Simulated reduction in Atlantic hurricane frequency under twenty-first-century warming conditions", found that global warming might increase wind shear over the Atlantic by the end of the century, resulting in a decrease in the number of Atlantic hurricanes. For example, the second study took 18 relatively coarse (>60 km grid size) models used to formulate the 2007 IPCC climate report, and "downscaled" them using a higher-resolution (18 km grid size) model called ZETAC that was able to successfully simulate the frequencies of hurricanes over the past 50 years. When the 18 km ZETAC model was driven using the climate conditions we expect in 2100, as output by the 18 IPCC models, the authors found that a reduction of Atlantic tropical storms by 27% and hurricanes by 18% by the end of the century resulted. An important reason that their model predicted a decrease in the frequency of Atlantic hurricanes was due to a predicted increase in wind shear. As I explain in my wind shear tutorial, a large change of wind speed with height over a hurricane creates a shearing force that tends to tear the storm apart. The amount of wind shear is critical in determining whether a hurricane can form or survive.


Figure 1. Top: predicted change by 2100 in wind shear (in meters per second per degree C of warming--multiply by two to get mph) as predicted by summing the predictions of 18 climate models. Bottom: The number of models that predict the effect shown in the top image. The dots show the locations where tropical storms formed between 1981-2005. The box indicates a region of frequent hurricane formation where wind shear is not predicted to change much. Image credit: Geophysical Research Letters, "Increased Tropical Atlantic Wind Shear in Model Projections of Global Warming", by Vecchi and Soden, 2007.

Since the Knutson et al. study using the 18 km resolution ZETAC model was not detailed enough to look at what might happen to major Category 3 and stronger hurricanes, a new study using a higher resolution model was needed. This was done by a team of modelers led by Dr. Morris Bender of NOAA's GFDL laboratory, who published their results in Science in February. The authors used the GFDL hurricane model--the model that has been our best-performing operation hurricane track forecasting model over the past five years--to perform their study. The GFDL hurricane model runs at a resolution of 9 km, which is detailed enough to make accurate simulations of major hurricanes. The researchers did a double downscaling study, where they first took the forecast atmospheric and oceanic conditions at generated by the coarse (>60 km grid) IPCC models, used these data to initialize the finer resolution 18 km ZETAC model, then used the output from the ZETAC model to initialize the high-resolution GFDL hurricane model. The final results of this "double downscaling" study suggest that although the total number of hurricanes is expected to decrease by the end of the century, we should expect an increase of 81% in the number of Category 4 and 5 storms in the Atlantic. This trend should not be clearly detectable until about 60 years from now, given a scenario in which CO2 doubles by 2100. The authors say that their model predicts that there should already have been a 20% increase in the number of Category 4 and 5 storms since the 1940s, given the approximate 0.5°C warming of the tropical Atlantic during that period. This trend is too small to be detectable, given the high natural variability and the difficulty we've had accurately measuring the exact strength of intense hurricanes before the 1980s.The region of the Atlantic expected to see the greatest increase in Category 4 and 5 storms by the year 2100 is over the Bahama Islands (Figure 2), since wind shear is not expected to increase in this region, and sea surface temperatures and atmospheric instability are expected to increase there.

The net effect of a decrease in total number of hurricanes but an increase in the strongest hurricanes should cause an increase in U.S. hurricane damages of about 30% by the end of the century, the authors compute, assuming that hurricane damages behave as they did during the past century. Over the past century, Category 4 and 5 hurricanes made up only 6% of all U.S. landfalls, but accounted for 48% of all U.S. damage (if normalized to account for increases in U.S. population and wealth, Pielke et al., 2008.)


Figure 2. Expected change in Atlantic Category 4 and 5 hurricanes per decade expected by the year 2100, according to the Science paper by Bender et al. (2010).

Commentary
These results seem reasonable, since the models in question have been successfully been able to simulate the behavior of hurricanes over the past 50 years. However, the uncertainties are high and lot more research needs to be done before we can be confident of the results. Not all of the IPCC models predict an increase in wind shear over the tropical Atlantic by 2100, so the increase in Category 4 and 5 hurricanes could be much greater. Also, the GFDL model was observed to under-predict the strength of intense hurricanes in the current climate, so it may not be creating enough Category 4 and 5 hurricanes in the future climate of 2100. On the other hand, IPCC models such as the UKMO-HadCM3 predict a very large increase in wind shear, leading to a drastic reduction in all hurricanes in the Atlantic by 2100, including Category 4 and 5 storms. So Category 4 and 5 hurricane frequency could easily be much greater or much less than the 81% increase by 2100 found by Bender et al.

The estimates of a 30% increase in hurricane damages by 2100 may be considerably too low, since this estimate assumes that sea level rise will continue at the same pace as was observed in the 20th century. Sea level rise has accelerated since the 1990s, and it is likely that this century we will see much more than than the 7 inches of global sea level rise that was observed last century. Higher sea level rise rates will sharply increase the damages due to storm surge, which account for a large amount of the damage from intense Category 4 and 5 hurricanes.

Keep in mind that while a 30% in hurricane damage by the end of the century is significant, this will not be the main reason hurricane damages will increase this century. Hurricane damages are currently doubling every ten years, according to Pielke et al., 2008. This is primarily due to the increasing population along the coast and increased wealth of the population. The authors theorize that the Great Miami Hurricane of 1926, a Category 4 monster that made a direct hit on Miami Beach, would have caused about $150 billion in damage had it hit in 2005. By 2015, the authors expect the same hurricane would do $300 billion in damage. This number would increase to $600 billion by 2025 (though I think it is likely that the recent recession may delay this damage total a few years into the future.) It is essential that we limit coastal development in vulnerable coastal areas, particularly along barrier islands, to reduce some of the astronomical price tags hurricanes are going to be causing. Adoption and enforcement of strict building standards is also a must.

The authors of the GFDL hurricane model study have put together a nice web page with links to the paper and some detailed non-technical explanations of the paper.

References
Bender et al., 2010, "Modeled Impact of Anthropogenic Warming on the Frequency of Intense Atlantic Hurricanes", Science, 22 January 2010: Vol. 327. no. 5964, pp. 454 - 458 DOI: 10.1126/science.1180568.

Vecchi, G.A., B.J. Soden, A.T. Wittenberg, I.M. Held, A. Leetmaa, and M.J. Harrison, 2006, "Weakening of tropical Pacific atmospheric circulation due to anthropogenic forcing", Nature, 441(7089), 73-76.

Vecchi, G.A., and B.J. Soden, 2007, "Increased Tropical Atlantic Wind Shear in Model Projections of Global Warming", Geophysical Research Letters, 34, L08702, doi:10.1029/2006GL028905, 2007.

Jeff Masters

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Quoting NRAamy:
I want to chase hurricanes from their development to landfall using submarines and "disposable" surface craft.

you could use cyclonebuster's tunnels.....

;)


Uh oh...you've lumped me in with him, huh? ;)
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We have tons of rain coming out way. I was just out side the is still a lot before we're done with this storm. The froggies are happy though. I saw two while I was out.
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Oooooo, this is going to be pretty morbid.

But let's say I get caught up in a real bad Cat 5 and unfortunately, I don't make it out.

My epirb will be going off, so I should be located.

Folks, I'm wearing my camera equipment this year. The cameras should still be mounted to me when I'm found.

My team has strict instructions to publish the footage, no matter the content. My wife, who will assume control of the cameras, knows who to give it to so that my wishes are met.
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1797. Agreed. Well the whole rating system is changing this year and will hopefully eliminate a lot of cunfusion regarding wind vs water.
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Quoting Skyepony:
I know I'm late jumping in the Cat5 game. Wouldn't play near any possible surge. No thanks to a flag pole. I think over a parking garage I'd prefer a reinforced concrete (preferably poured) house..those ones developers & contractors build for themselves. The porches are small, somewhat enclosed & covered by the house roof. Think I'd rip out the screens & hang out on which ever was on the lee side of the wind. My uncle's house like this was the only one left standing in like a square mile in Homestead after Andrew. A small subdivision he built to his standards took minor damage as well, though it wasn't in the total brunt like his house.




Why rip out the screens? Would the hurricane tear it apart anyways? My house was built shortly before Andrew, and was in West Kendall so the damage was no where near as bad as say Cutler Ridge or Countrywalk.
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1800. NRAamy
I want to chase hurricanes from their development to landfall using submarines and "disposable" surface craft.

you could use cyclonebuster's tunnels.....

;)
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Quoting NttyGrtty:
With the new unmanned aircraft inprovements, I'd bet we are very close, maybe even this season, to that...a disposable-fly-in-send-data-out-then-die-unmanned-aircraft...DFISDOTDUA...you read it here first


They plan to test the Coyote UAS in a cyclone this year.

NOAA's utilization of Coyote unmanned aircraft systems for tropical cyclone research

It is launched like a dropsonde and then unfolds it's wings. Battery power with an estimated flight time of 1 hour. Sort of like a flying dropsonde.
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1790. Well thats good to know! Seems their would be some military vessel that could withstand such force and document the landfall. I know here locally we just built a new destroyer thet will be utilized by three branches of the military. I'm sure it could withstand the force and offer immediate relief aid as well. Google "Littoral Ship Austel". It is a high speed war ship.
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You know, sorry to say, but these Cat 5 arguments make more sense to me than the GW ones we find ourselves in sometime.
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jess... normally you are quite resonable... however now I believe you are dead wrong. Surge is the most dangerous, sure. But to say "It's not great feat" to document cat 5 winds ... well, last I checked, the majority of instruments that were exposed to that FAIL... and have you checked to see what category of tornadoes they attempt to intercept? Last I checked it was -< EF3 ... according to the scale, thats weaker or roughly equivalent (165 is max EF3) to a cat 5 SUSTAINED (not counting gusts) ....
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Quoting iluvjess:
I think in order to document surge one would have to change their thought process to a large sea worthy vessel. Any attempt to document from a land based local will be very difficult in a 20 foot surge combined with 150mph+ winds.


And there it is in a nutshell. Exactly right.

Still, I believe it can be done using the right equipment and strategy, with location being of utmost and prime importance.

So it comes down to timing, location, personal will, and alot of luck...
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Quoting Bordonaro:


It's too bad they don't deploy a "hurricane intercepter", a set of instruments like some of the "Tornado storm chasers" use to determine the strength of a tornado. That would be alot safer!


I want to chase hurricanes from their development to landfall using submarines and "disposable" surface craft.

But no one thought that was a good idea last year when I proposed it.
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Quoting BahaHurican:
Prolly what made Max Mayfield retire... that feeling.


Which is a shame because Max Mayfield is probably the best director the NHC has had and saved a ton of lives
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I think in order to document surge one would have to change their thought process to a large sea worthy vessel. Any attempt to document from a land based local will be very difficult in a 20 foot surge combined with 150mph+ winds.
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Quoting NttyGrtty:
With the new unmanned aircraft inprovements, I'd bet we are very close, maybe even this season, to that...a disposable-fly-in-send-data-out-then-die-unmanned-aircraft...DFISDOTDUA...you read it here first


Yeah...and these need to first sweep low about 30 feet above the wave action of the eye, then go in the eyewall "for the kill." Strong transmission for how long? 2 minutes at most?

Still...worthy.
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Quoting iluvjess:
Documenting Cat 5 wind speeds would be no great feat. Any one of the storm chasers with an armoured intercept vehicle can do that. It would be like chasing a tornadoe with a map of its projected path and hours advance notice. The real accomplishment would be to document the surge and this is what I thought that Oz was trying to do.


I'm all about documenting a Cat 5 storm surge. But to do so "safely" has to take into account dozens of critical factors, base location being of prime importance.

Back to Katrina as an example. Had I intercepted that storm, I would have known that the Waveland, Pass Christian, and Bay St. Louis areas would be the worst place to be as far as location goes, because of the lack of seawall and lack of structures that could be used as a shelter.

I would've been in Biloxi, which was just far enough away from the inner eyewall to "not count." (Although the guys in that parking garage did get some amazing footage of storm surge.)

Yet, we did not see the worst of it, and Katrina's "most devastating surge" was not documented, because there was no one there to do it...as it should have been.

But lets, for the sake of the argument, say that Katrina moved further east at landfall...making Biloxi the bullseye.

I would have been in Biloxi. There are places there where a survival strategy could have been formed.

So let's see how this year plays out.

But rest assured, I will not be on some deserted beach that a Cat 5 has bullseyed.

That would be just plain stupid for me to do something like that.
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Quoting iluvjess:
1766. With all due respect, it's all about the surge. You must avoid the surge. In doing so, you will remove yourself from the CAT 5 conditions. You may document a landfalling CAT 5 hurricane but it will be in an area not receiving CAT 5 conditions. Such documentation is readilly available.


No it isn't. Hurricane Andrew was Category 5 conditions well inland around the eyewall. Surge isn't the only thing in a storm.
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Quoting Bordonaro:


It's too bad they don't deploy a "hurricane intercepter", a set of instruments like some of the "Tornado storm chasers" use to determine the strength of a tornado. That would be alot safer!
With the new unmanned aircraft inprovements, I'd bet we are very close, maybe even this season, to that...a disposable-fly-in-send-data-out-then-die-unmanned-aircraft...DFISDOTDUA...you read it here first
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Quoting iluvjess:


I'm sorry, did I say that a tornado had the same size wind field as a hurricane? I think I said that documentind winds of that speed would be no great feat. But since you mentioned it, yes, the windfield in a hurricane is much larger therefore making it even easier to document and even less of a big deal.


They don't do it because documenting Cat 5 wind speeds is no big deal. the surge is the killer and no intercept vehicle would be safe in the surge. Too much focus is placed on the winds in a hurricane, hence why this year, there will be a fundamental change in hurricane forecasting. Surge is the killer, not the wind.
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Quoting Bordonaro:


It's too bad they don't deploy a "hurricane intercepter", a set of instruments like some of the "Tornado storm chasers" use to determine the strength of a tornado. That would be alot safer!
I (and a lot of other pple, I'd guess)would be happy if they could create a set of wx instruments that won't blow away during cat 5 sustained winds.
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Quoting pcbdragon:

Except a tornado only has cat 5 winds for about a mile and a cat 5 hurricane has a much larger wind field


I'm sorry, did I say that a tornado had the same size wind field as a hurricane? I think I said that documentind winds of that speed would be no great feat. But since you mentioned it, yes, the windfield in a hurricane is much larger therefore making it even easier to document and even less of an accomplishment.
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Quoting NttyGrtty:
Oz, I've seen your videos. You risk much less than the gang here thinks. Your avitar, for example, I'd bet is a second or two then back to your plan. The benefits out weigh the risk with the planning you do. Risk management runs parallel to emergency management. You are not a draw on the system any more than the hurricane hunter aircraft are. Carefully calulated risk equals not distain for authority...


It's too bad they don't deploy a "hurricane intercepter", a set of instruments like some of the "Tornado storm chasers" use to determine the strength of a tornado. That would be alot safer!
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1783. NRAamy



dude....you need a jock strap next time!!!!!! seriously!!!!!!!!!

;)
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Quoting iluvjess:
Documenting Cat 5 wind speeds would be no great feat. Any one of the storm chasers with an armoured intercept vehicle can do that. It would be like chasing a tornadoe with a map of its projected path and hours advance notice. The real accomplishment would be to document the surge and this is what I thought that Oz was trying to do.

Except a tornado only has cat 5 winds for about a mile and a cat 5 hurricane has a much larger wind field
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Quoting WaterWitch11:


what really gets me and makes me cry when i think about it was watching it develop, cross florida and go into the gulf and the watching it grow. i can still see all the satellite images in my head. knowing with out a doubt that it was going to be horrific and many people would suffer and be gone AND NOT BEING ABLE TO DO A DAMN THING ABOUT IT.
Prolly what made Max Mayfield retire... that feeling.
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Oz, I've seen your videos. You risk much less than the gang here thinks. Your avitar, for example, I'd bet is a second or two then back to your plan. The benefits out weigh the risk with the planning you do. Risk management runs parallel to emergency management. You are not a draw on the system any more than the hurricane hunter aircraft are. Carefully calulated risk equals not distain for authority...
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Documenting Cat 5 wind speeds would be no great feat. Any one of the storm chasers with an armoured intercept vehicle can do that. It would be like chasing a tornadoe with a map of its projected path and hours advance notice. The real accomplishment would be to document the surge and this is what I thought that Oz was trying to do.
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Quoting twhcracker:


omg those katrina stories gave me nightmares. people in the attic trying to bust through the ceiling while water up to their chins.


what really gets me and makes me cry when i think about it was watching it develop, cross florida and go into the gulf and the watching it grow. i can still see all the satellite images in my head. knowing with out a doubt that it was going to be horrific and many people would suffer and be gone AND NOT BEING ABLE TO DO A DAMN THING ABOUT IT.
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BTW, here's my latest photo series, taken this past Easter Monday holiday. The weather has been this wonderful all week.



Rest of the series is available at my Photos section.
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I guess I was under the impression that he was trying to get closer to the beach. Winds do reach further inland but that has been previously documented.
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1775. Patrap
Video taken by Vaccarella Family during/after Hurricane .

This is the same Neighborhood in St Bernard,Just east of NOLA by 8 Miles.

Note the Elder Vacarella talking about Betsy in 65 in the beginning.

Cat 3 Winds at Height,Cat 5 Surge





Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 414 Comments: 125530
Quoting iluvjess:
1766. With all due respect, it's all about the surge. You must avoid the surge. In doing so, you will remove yourself from the CAT 5 conditions. You may document a landfalling CAT 5 hurricane but it will be in an area not receiving CAT 5 conditions. Such documentation is readilly available.

I disagree. Cat5 winds can penetrate further inland than where the surge reaches.
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Pat, I haven't seen that Biloxi one before... every time I see the other I get "shivers"....
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1766. With all due respect, it's all about the surge. You must avoid the surge. In doing so, you will remove yourself from the CAT 5 conditions. You may document a landfalling CAT 5 hurricane but it will be in an area not receiving CAT 5 conditions. Such documentation is readilly available.
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1770. Skyepony (Mod)
I know I'm late jumping in the Cat5 game. Wouldn't play near any possible surge. No thanks to a flag pole. I think over a parking garage I'd prefer a reinforced concrete (preferably poured) house..those ones developers & contractors build for themselves. The porches are small, somewhat enclosed & covered by the house roof. Think I'd rip out the screens & hang out on which ever was on the lee side of the wind. My uncle's house like this was the only one left standing in like a square mile in Homestead after Andrew. A small subdivision he built to his standards took minor damage as well, though it wasn't in the total brunt like his house.


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Quoting iluvjess:
Oz, if you think that wind is the killer in a Cat 5 then may God be with you. Hide from wind, run from surge.

I think he's aware of that. I'm not concerned about the surge getting him, he's aware of the topography to the extent that surge shouldnt be the issue. My biggest concern is debris. Cat 5 winds are incredibly strong, add in vorticies higher than that even ... and I dont care if you're wearing steel plate, a 2x4 travelling at 200mph + ... if nothing else the concussive blow can be deadly, even if the steel isn't penetrated or the integrity sacrificed in anyway...
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1768. NRAamy
But Cat IV and below...I'm there, baby.

with or without jock!

;)
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Quoting iluvjess:
Oz, if you think that wind is the killer in a Cat 5 then may God be with you. Hide from wind, run from surge.


In a Cat 5, you can name it and it will kill you. Glass, aluminum sheds, cars, floods, nails, boards with nails, boards with other boards still attached to them...etc.etc...

That's why you have to know the best place to position yourself. It's all about location.
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Quoting Floodman:


Well, I'm deadly serious, OZ; let a couple of us get with you and talk through all of your prep if you're looking at intercepting anything over a 3; as presslord is wont to say, more brains are better...you're our crazy, daredevil cousin here at WU and I think I speak for everyone when I say we want you to be in here next winter talking #$%^ and regaling us with stories of cars and trees spinning past you...

Okay, kids, got to bounce! BBL


You folks should know what I've brought, but more importantly, where I plan on basing my operations.

You're right about more brains on that task. If I'm missing something, perhaps one of you guys can catch it before the mistake is made.
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Oz, if you think that wind is the killer in a Cat 5 then may God be with you. Hide from wind, run from surge.
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Quoting CycloneOz:


But the last thing about others...that can't all be put on me, because other storm interceptors, some much more well known than me do it on broadcast TV...heck...Reid Timmer of StormChasers has so many friends on Facebook that new friend wannabees are rejected! Too many friends! And alot of them are out chasing tornadoes.
I know u r not the only one doing this stuff. I actually have a lot of confidence in your prep methods / techniques, so far as I understand them from what I've seen on ur site and on this blog. And for the record, I think tornado-chasers are at least AS crazy, if not crazier ... LOL. I just want the "average Joe" on the blog to realize that what u do is not automatically as easy as it looks, and also that "discretion is the better part of valour" - i.e. there is absolutely nothing wrong with getting the H--- outta Dodge... lol

Happy storm-chasing.
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Quoting Patrap:
Yeah,,..I saw that un too I think FLoodman.

And the word "God",Lucky and "Never again", about 2 million times the following weeks too.


Yeah man, we all think we're indestructible until we get about 10 seconds away from dying. I can tell you this: when I wo0ke up Sunday morning and the storm was now a CAT5 and it hadn't turned east, I scooped up my wife and stepdaughter and I RAN
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Quoting Floodman:


Well, I'm deadly serious, OZ; let a couple of us get with you and talk through all of your prep if you're looking at intercepting anything over a 3; as presslord is wont to say, more brains are better...you're our crazy, daredevil cousin here at WU and I think I speak for everyone when I say we want you to be in here next winter talking #$%^ and regaling us with stories of cars and trees spinning past you...

Okay, kids, got to bounce! BBL


AGREED!
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Quoting CycloneOz:
I'm actually counting on you regulars here at WU who go over to the web site to see the web cam to login to the chat room and calm every one down who doesn't know me, or how prepared I am.

Just saying things like, "Yeah...he's crazy curious but at least he thinks he knows what he's doing" will help settle those who might be freaking out....and I thank you in advance.


Well, I'm deadly serious, OZ; let a couple of us get with you and talk through all of your prep if you're looking at intercepting anything over a 3; as presslord is wont to say, more brains are better...you're our crazy, daredevil cousin here at WU and I think I speak for everyone when I say we want you to be in here next winter talking #$%^ and regaling us with stories of cars and trees spinning past you...

Okay, kids, got to bounce! BBL
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1759. Patrap
Yeah,,..I saw that un too I think FLoodman.

And the word "God",Lucky and "Never again", about 2 million times the following weeks too.
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 414 Comments: 125530
Quoting eyesontheweather:

Wasn't it Dan Rather who tied himself to a tree somewhere on the TX coast and reported live as a hurricane came in sometime in the 60's


If you are in a very bad hurricane, and you are not prepared to lash yourself down, you have made a potentially life-threatening mistake in your preparation.
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Quoting Patrap:
Video taken by Guerra Family after Hurricane Katrina. Chalmette, LA.

"In 3 Minutes it went From the Ground to the Roof"



I've watched that clip a dozen times and everytime I think about the guy in NOLA who didn't leave...he was being interviewed sometime after the storm...

"When the water started coming into the first floor I wasn't worried; I grabbed my wife and the roofing hatchet and we went upstairs. I told my wife not to worry, that the water wouldn't make into the second floor, it just wouldn't. About twenty minutes later, it was knee deep on the second floor and we went into the attic. 10 minutes later it was ankle deep in the attic and I thought 'I may have miscalculated'

I heard that interview the first time and I laughed for a good ten minutes...I may have miscalculated...
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Quoting CycloneOz:


I thank you, as I know for sure I'm not the only one out there who is curious about the insides of a hurricane.

All I can say is that I'm doing my best, with equipment purchases and survival strategies. And it's been my experience that when I do my best, I'm rewarded.

I'm uniquely qualified, prepared, and focused enough to give you folks here a live window in a landfalling hurricane...and I'm determined to do it...as safely and carefully as I can.

Wasn't it Dan Rather who tied himself to a tree somewhere on the TX coast and reported live as a hurricane came in sometime in the 60's
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Quoting Bordonaro:


What you need is some type of "body armor" that is lightweight.


dragginjeans.com (1 complete pair of those...price 'em, too!)

bladerunner.tv (1 complete pair of those...price'em, too!)

Plus...catcher's chest, kevlar neck guard, gloves, and steel-soled fireman's boots, catcher's shin guards, cup, waterproof socks, lacrosse arm pads, hockey shoulder pads, helmet, safety glasses, safety goggles underneath, and a backpack that carries the emergency lighting battery that powers the live web cam and my cell phone set to auto answer.

It takes me 90 minutes to gear up for a major Cat storm. I've timed myself.
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About JeffMasters

Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.

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