Hurricane season 2024: forecasts predict high activity - Pirac

Hurricane season 2024: forecasts predict high activity

03 June 2024

Meteorologists* are unanimous: this year’s hurricane activity, which runs from June 1 to November 30, will be well above average in the Caribbean.. Against this backdrop, PIRAC is actively monitoring the region to anticipate cyclonic risks until November. In advance of this work, PIRAC has been mobilizing for several months now to be ready to intervene rapidly in the event of a major disaster, through anticipation and preparation actions, always with a view to supporting and strengthening the capacities of National Societies and territorial delegations in the Caribbean zone.

Focus on key figures

Forecasts** predict an 85% probability of above-average cyclonic activity, with :

  • 17 to 25 tropical storms, compared with 17 in an average season;
  • 8 to 13 hurricanes (categories 1 and 2) compared with 7 in an average season;
  • 4 to 7 major hurricanes (categories 3 to 5) compared with 3 in an average season.

These forecasts apply in particular to the Caribbean, including the French regions of Martinique, Guadeloupe, Saint-Barthélemy and Saint-Martin.

How can we explain these forecasts?

This situation can be explained by two major phenomena:

  • The positive temperature anomalies expected in the North Atlantic Ocean over the next few months. For more than two years, meteorologists have been observing above-normal surface temperatures in the Atlantic Ocean. This abnormality provides fertile ground for the formation of cyclonic phenomena.
  • The presence of the La Niña climatic phenomenon, with its decrease in wind shear, is leading to forecasts of high cyclonic activity in the Caribbean.

The list of names of this season’s cyclones has been unveiled by the Hurricane Committee, a regional body of the WMO (World Meteorological Organization): Alberto, Beryl, Chris, Debby, Ernesto, Francine, Gordon, Hélène, Isaac, Joyce, Kirk, Leslie, Milton, Nadine, Oscar, Patty, Rafael, Sara, Tony, Valérie and William.

Mobilization of PIRAC and its partners through actions to anticipate and prepare for disaster risks

Cooperation with the Armed Forces in the French West Indies for the “Caraïbes 2024” exercise

Because training is essential in the run-up to the hurricane season, the Armed Forces in the French West Indies have been running the “Caraïbes 2024” exercise throughout the country from May 30 to June 7. The exercise is based on a fictitious scenario involving the passage of a cyclone over the whole of Guadeloupe. On May 30, PIRAC provided logistical and organizational support to the Guadeloupe regional delegation of the French Red Cross.

In conjunction with the Prefecture’s Cellule Opérationnelle Départementale, PIRAC and the territorial delegation of the Guadeloupe Red Cross worked together to set up a Welcome Center for those involved. The disaster victims were played by young volunteers from the RSMA (Régiment du service militaire adapté).

A partnership with the IFRC for the “Pre-Hurricane Conference” 2024

Like every year, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) invites the National Societies of the American continent and the various technical and scientific bodies, including PIRAC, to take part in the “Pre-Hurricane Conference (PHC)”. From April 23 to 25, the conference focused on the interaction between the global meteorological phenomena El Niño and La Niña, and the mechanisms for anticipating and preparing for disasters. Faced with these complex dynamics, the PHC reflected on the ability of communities and governments to forecast, respond and adapt.

Among the thirty or so presentations on offer, PIRAC had the opportunity to focus on the WASH (Water, Hygiene and Sanitation) component, presenting its strategy and emergency response capabilities.

This virtual conference on cyclone preparedness was a major opportunity to strengthen links and coordination within the International Red Cross Movement, alongside the hundreds of volunteers, partners and donors who took part: a means of better anticipating and preparing for future crises, particularly during the 2024 cyclone season.

*Météo France, NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) et le CSU Tropical Weather and Climate Research

** Source : NOAA



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