Hurricane Season 2016: It Only Takes One!

by Chip Kasper

Hurricane Season 2016:  It Only Takes One!

Recent hurricane seasons in the Florida Keys have been unusually quiet.  In fact, hurricane-force winds have not visited any Florida Keys community since the pre-dawn hours of October 24, 2005 (Hurricane Wilma), over a decade ago.  An examination of hurricane paths and landfalls for over a century reveals that hurricane activity varies from active to inactive on both seasonal and decadal cycles.  In addition, history shows clearly that the Florida Keys are among the most vulnerable and frequently hit areas in North America.  Moreover, seafaring communities like those in the Florida Keys have always been exceptionally vulnerable to the hazards imposed by hurricanes:  storm surge floods; destructive winds; violent tornadoes and waterspouts; powerful waves, surf, and current; and blinding, flooding rains.  The mariner’s only sure protection from these potentially deadly impacts is avoidance.  Taking protective action starts with proper planning.  Do you have a plan?  If not, now is the time to get a plan, for your family, your boat, your business, to save your life.
FishMonster Magazine-July/August 2016
Lessons from previous storms point to the importance of having a hurricane plan, and acting early.  Keep in mind that a marina in the Florida Keys is not a viable sanctuary for a vessel of any type during a direct hurricane threat.  Extra lines and hurricane holes may work for a tropical storm (sustained winds 34–63 knots).  However, with a true hurricane impact, avoidance is the best strategy—sortie out, trailer out, or haul out.  Please do not stay on your boat during a hurricane!  A boat is no place to be in a hurricane, and post-storm obituaries from numerous hurricanes, various locations, and across time, in the Florida Keys and elsewhere, are sad proof of this.  Fortunately, numerous resources are available to help those in the Florida Keys marine community stay aware, and be prepared during hurricane season.  Check out the web sites listed on this page for more information.  Hurricane Season 2016 is here.  Be hurricane prepared, weather-ready, and stay safe!




Chip Kasper
Chip Kasper

Author

Chip is a senior forecaster and marine program meteorologist at the NOAA/National Weather Service Forecast Office in Key West. The National Weather Service provides weather, water, and climate information for the protection of life and property on land and at sea. Email Chip at kennard.kasper@noaa.gov.



Leave a comment

Comments will be approved before showing up.


Also in Chip Kasper - FishMonster Magazine

Be Hurricane Prepared!
Be Hurricane Prepared!

by Chip Kasper

Read More

The Squalls of March
The Squalls of March

by Chip Kasper

Read More

Florida Keys Winter Weather and Climate
Florida Keys Winter Weather and Climate

by Chip Kasper

Read More