Meteorologists monitoring unusual pattern
Photo: Hurricane Dean as seen from spacestation
Caribbean weather forecasters are keeping their eyes on a recent trend which saw intense hurricanes forming or tracking a more southerly direction than was the norm, a top meteorologist has disclosed. The deputy director of the Caribbean Community Climate Change Centre described the southern hurricane activity as part of a "STRANGE" weather pattern. "About 10 years ago, we saw one develop in the south Atlantic where your professor would tell you that never occurs. Unfortunately, the two hurricanes have been Category Five hurricanes, they made landfall as Category Five hurricanes. It is the first time in history and we have data going back to 1885; this has never happened." A high-pressure system, known as the Bermuda High, kept both 'Dean' and 'Felix' on a westerly track. "We can start to pray that the Bermuda High will weaken so that the systems that do form, and they will form, will go more into the Atlantic as they did in the past. The one inhibiting factor that could occur would be if, for example, an El Niño were to develop quickly in the Pacific, which would then tend to move the activity more into the Pacific than the Atlantic, but we are certainly not seeing that right now. So the outlook is right now for people to keep the plywood that you've been using and look out. We could easily get a third threat." Extreme hurricanes like 'Dean' and 'Felix' are part of a period of high activity, which began back in 1995, and is expected to last foranother 20 to 25 years. 'Dean' and 'Felix' also surprised weather experts with their rapid intensification and speed, but this was attributed to warmer land and sea temperatures. "If the Caribbean is warmer than it normally is, then you would expect stronger hurricanes and that is exactly what occurred in the Caribbean. Hurricanes Dean and Felix impacted several Caribbean and Latin American countries.
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