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2015 Hurricane Forecast

Date Published:

Believe it or not, the 2015 hurricane season is only one month away. The official start date for the Eastern Pacific is May 15 and it will end on November 30.

The first forecast from CONAGUA (The National Water Commission) suggests that they are expecting 19 tropical cyclones, of which 8 will be tropical storms; 7 could be strong hurricanes (categories 1 and 2), and 4 intense hurricanes (Category 3, 4 or 5) i.e. of the magnitude of Odile.

Of course, it is early in the season to make accurate predictions and also it must be remembered that the Eastern Pacific region is vast so even if four intense hurricanes were to form, the probabilities of another Odile scale disaster are remote. However nature is an unpredictable force so the possibility exists.

The presence of El Niño this year will have an inevitable impact on things. Paradoxically, an El Niño in the pacific seems to have a calming influence on Atlantic hurricanes where early forecast by Colorado university are predicting a lower than usual number of storms there.

El Niño was first officially declared by NOAA as winter wound down. As of this early April forecast, El Niño, a periodic warming of the equatorial Pacific waters, has been given a 60 percent chance of persisting into the fall, according to NOAA's Climate Prediction Center.

"Our best estimate is that we will likely have at least a moderate strength El Niño even during the peak of the Atlantic hurricane season," said Klotzbach and Gray of Colorado University.

There is also a body of scientific evidence linking the occurrence of El Niño with increased wind shear in the tropical Atlantic Basin, which is one factor, along with dry air, that limits the development and strengthening of tropical cyclones in that region.

However, exactly where the warming of the equatorial Pacific waters takes place and the magnitude of that warming will play an active part in the number of severe storms experienced in the Eastern Pacific.

“Simply put, El Niño favors stronger hurricane activity in the central and eastern Pacific basins, and suppresses it in the Atlantic basin” said Dr Gerry Bell of NOAA. “Conversely, La Niña suppresses hurricane activity in the central and eastern Pacific basins, and enhances it in the Atlantic basin” he added.

As last year, iTravel-Cabo will play an active part in issuing early warnings and advisories as the season develops.

The NOAA, in readiness, has issued the naming conventions for tropical storms and hurricanes for the 2015 season:

Andres                 Blanca                   Carlos                    Dolores                   Enrique

Felicia                    Guillermo            Hilda                      Ignacio                  Jimena

Kevin                     Linda                     Marty                    Nora                      Olaf

Patricia                 Rick                        Sandra                  Terry                     Vivian

Waldo                   Xina                       York                       Zelda

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