It’s Hurricane Season and Time to Prepare in Alabama – Part 1

By Jim Stefkovich, Meteorologist, Alabama Emergency Management Agency

CLANTON –Monday, 9 am June 7, 2021

All forecasts show this will be a very active tropical season.  We have already had one named storm in May, and as shown in the graphic above, potential development is possible later this week.  Now is the time to prepare as systems in the Gulf of Mexico are possible at any time.

2020 set the record with 30 named storms, including eight Gulf Coast landfalls.  As shown in the graphic below, the entire Gulf and Atlantic coasts were under a tropical storm and/or hurricane watch/warning!  Note the Tropical Storm Warning from Sally that included much of inland Alabama all the way to southern Virginia.  A lot of damage occurred across inland Alabama and once again shows tropical storms and hurricanes are not “just” coastal events.

Since the Gulf of Mexico waters are much warmer than the Atlantic Ocean in June and July, tropical activity is more likely in the Gulf.  These systems can develop both quickly and near the coast, leaving little time for preparation or evacuation.  That’s why it’s important to be proactive now and be prepared.

To learn more about developing or reviewing your tropical action plan, go to https://www.ready.gov/hurricanes and https://www.weather.gov/wrn/hurricane-preparedness 

Tomorrow I will talk about where to (and not to) find reliable weather information, misconceptions people have, and how to interpret various tropical storm/hurricane forecast products.

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