The Coastal Bend has been very fortunate over the last several years in not having to deal with a catastrophic tropical storm or hurricane. Some of the historic storms that have made landfall in the Corpus Christi area include Hurricane Beulah in 1967, Hurricane Celia in 1970, Tropical Storm Amelia in 1978, and Hurricane Bret in 1999.
We are pushing over fifteen years that we have been spared. However, we must always remain with our guard high during the season because it only takes one storm to make it a bad year like those years previously listed.
The Atlantic Hurricane Season goes from June 1st through November 30. It is imperative that you and your family members have a plan in place in the event that a hurricane watch or warning is issued for the Coastal Bend.
Where will you go? Will you have enough supplies? Is your property well prepared? These are just some questions you should ask yourself.
An emergency supply kit should always be kept on stand-by that has enough items to care for your entire family. Be sure that there is plenty of water, canned food, first aid supplies, and prescription/non-prescription medicines. Also, it would be a good idea to keep important documents in a well secured location.
The Colorado State Forecast team led by Dr. Phil Klotzbach is predicting a near normal 2016 hurricane season. Their April 1st forecast for this year is largely based on the premise that the strong El Niño we had this past winter will continue to weaken the rest of this season and may switch to a La Nina by late summer.
This combined with cooler than normal sea surface temperatures in the Atlantic Ocean – the breeding grounds for most storms – will persist. The team predicts 13 named storms with 6 expected to become hurricanes, and of those, 2 developing into major hurricane.
A major hurricane is a category 3, 4, or 5 on the Saffir-Simpson Scale, with sustained winds of 111 mph or greater. The long term averages are 12 named storms, 6 hurricanes and 3 major hurricanes per year.
It is always important to remember that no matter how many or how few storms we have, it only takes one storm making landfall here to cause a huge problem for us and make our season here in the Coastal Bend very active.
Tropical systems are measured in intensity by the Saffir-Simpson scale. A major hurricane is classified as a category 3 or higher and has sustained winds of 111 miles per hour. For a storm to be classified as a hurricane, sustained winds need to reach 74 miles per hour and is a category 1 storm. Tropical storm force winds must be at 39 miles per hour and this is when a storm receives a name.
The Doppler 10 Weather Team will be keeping a close eye on the tropics this season. You can always find the most up-to-date and current information right here on our website at www.kztv10.com/hurricane-hq.
Familiarize yourself with the different watches and warnings that are issued and what they mean. In addition to the heavy rains and high winds, these storms bring the danger of tornadoes, storm surge, and dangerous off-shore waters. You can track these storms with our interactive radar and we’ll be sure to be updating on social media platforms in the event that power is cut-off.
The more information you know on how to protect you, your family, and your property the better prepared you will be in the event that one of these storms decides to pay us a visit in the Coastal Bend.