Ask Eric: With A Quiet Tropical Season, What Will Winter Bring?
With such a quiet tropical season so far what impacts can we expect for this winter in NE.
It always comes back to winter in New England, doesn’t it! Our tropical season has featured very few hurricanes, and the majority of named storm activity waited until September to get started. That doesn’t necessarily mean it’s a quiet season yet…the Atlantic can quickly come to life and can produce over a half dozen named storms between September and November. The biggest storms tend to also come about during this time frame. But be that as it may, it *has* been lacking for strong hurricanes.
So to the point, we can look at a couple of other seasons that started out very peacefully as well. A colleague, @blizzardof96 on Twitter, runs a weather blog and answered this very question a short while ago. He looked at 2002 and 1977, two years when we waited as late as we did this year to see the first hurricane of the season. Then he looked at the winters that followed those seasons. The results are below.
Essentially, when you look at the departures from average from those two winters, they were brutal in the central/eastern U.S.! They ran well below average, in fact up to 4 degrees below average (which is a pretty big number in seasonal terms). It’s a small sample size, but perhaps we’ll end up seeing a similar result in the winter of 2013-2014. Time will tell for sure.