New hurricane cone of uncertainty unveiled before June 1 season starts

The National Hurricane Center unveiled a new look for its “cone of uncertainty” that it hopes will give people more information about a storm’s potential path of destruction.

It’s the first revamp of the well-known map in more than a decade and includes clearer fonts and softer colors, according to the NHC.

Download the Palm Beach Post WeatherPlus app here.

But more importantly, it adds a feature that shows the extent of hurricane- and tropical storm-force winds. The wind field appears in the map below as a yellow circle outlining where damaging winds may occur outside of the cone center.

Forecasters consistently ask the public not to focus on the cone because damaging winds can occur outside of its lines leaving people with a false sense of security if they aren’t in the official cone track.

Related: Ten things to know about El Nino

New hurricane tracking map includes wind field (in yellow circle below): 

The new hurricane forecast map will include information on how far out the wind field may extend.

Previous hurricane tracking map: 

The old hurricane tracker map did not contain wind field information.

The NHC has introduced a handful of new forecast products in recent years, including storm surge inundation maps that were put in play for the first time during 2016’s Hurricane Hermine.

Hermine broke Florida’s more than decade-long hurricane drought when it hit in the Big Bend region as a Category 1 storm in early September.

Check The Palm Beach Post radar map.

The center is also working on five-day track forecasts for systems that have yet to develop into official tropical cyclones so meteorologists won’t have to wait until the system organizes to issue advisories. The impetus for that change was storms such as 2015’s Tropical Storm Bill.

Hurricane forecasters were relatively confident Bill would become an organized storm, but by the time it gained the technical characteristics of a tropical cyclone, it was nearly on top of the Texas coast.

Another new item unveiled this year are colorful wind arrival maps that will show when tropical storm-force and hurricane winds are expected to reach a certain area.

New wind arrival maps will show when tropical storm-force and hurricane winds are expected to reach a certain area.

Reader Comments 0

0 comments