What are the chances a Hurricane returns?

Posted By on August 21, 2018

Every state, city and location along the Gulf and Atlantic coast is vunerable to tropical weather this time of year, especially in late summer. Here are a couple of maps highlighting the number of years between hurricanes (winds 74 and higher above) and major hurricanes (winds 111 and higher below). Neither is that comforting.

Every mile of the U.S. Gulf and East coast is vulnerable to a hurricane, but there are locations that have higher odds of being hit any given year. NOAA’s National Hurricane Center uses an analysis tool that quantifies those chances called the hurricane return period.  It’s the frequency at which a hurricane can be expected to pass within 50 nautical miles of a specific location. For example, a return period of 20 years for a major hurricane means that on average during the previous 100 years, a Category 3 or stronger hurricane passed within 50 nautical miles of that location about five times. Looking forward one could expect five Category 3 or stronger hurricanes within that 50 nautical mile radius during the next 100 years.

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Desultory - des-uhl-tawr-ee, -tohr-ee

  1. lacking in consistency, constancy, or visible order, disconnected; fitful: desultory conversation.
  2. digressing from or unconnected with the main subject; random: a desultory remark.