Caribbean Hurricane Network

- Updates from the Islands -

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2017 Atlantic Hurricane Season
| Arlene | Bret | Cindy | Don | Emily | Franklin | Gert | Harvey | Irma | Jose | Katia | Lee | Maria | Nate | Ophelia | Philippe | Rina | Sean | Tammy | Vince | Whitney |

Active Tropical Systems: None!
Atlantic Hurricane Season is from June 1 - November 30

GOES Satellite - Zoomed in on the Caribbean (15:00 UTC, 16 minutes ago)
Scale bar (lower right) is 250 miles. [more satellite imagery].

Thursday, April 12, 2018 06:50AM PDT - No more Irma and Maria
The World Meteorological Organization has retired the names of Irma and Maria, as well as Harvey and Nate. They will be replaced with Idalia, Margot, Harold and Nigel, resp. Irma was retired on its first use (after replacing Irene in 2011). The 'I'-storm are apparently notorious since it is the most commonly retired, so far 11 times. -Gert

Friday, April 6, 2018 09:46AM PDT - Another forecast
Yesterday I wrote about the hurricane season forecast released by Colorado State University. They expect a slightly above normal season. Another forecast was issued yesterday by the British company Tropical Storm Risk. They call for a below normal season with 12 named storms (the 68 year climate normal is 11), 6 hurricanes (6 is normal) of which 2 become a Category 3 or higher (3 is normal) with an Accumulated Cyclone Energy Index (ACE) of 84 (103 is normal). They say that there is a 40% probability that we will have a below average season, 33% normal and 27% probability of a above normal season. However they do note that the forecast skill of the April forecast is pretty low, not much better than using climatology as a forecast. The skill is a lot better for the August forecast. They show that the forecast by Colorado State University has surprisingly even less skill... So I guess we really should not focus too much on these early forecasts, and as we all know, regardless of the forecast we have to prepare as best we can. It only takes one! -Gert
     Comparison TSR and CSU (Colorado State)
                          TSR     CSU
     tropical storm        12      14
     hurricanes             6       7
     major hurricanes       2       3
     ACE index             84     130

Thursday, April 5, 2018 10:09AM PDT - "Normal" season ahead?
It is that time again! Klotzbach et al of Colorado State released their new forecast for the upcoming Atlantic Hurricane Season. They forecast a total of 14 named storms (12 is normal), 7 hurricanes (6.5 is normal) and 3 major hurricanes (2 is normal). So a bit above normal hurricane season...

The probability of at least one major hurricane tracking somewhere through the Caribbean is 52% (42% is normal). They also publish a spreadsheet with landfall probabilities for the Caribbean and Central America. For example, for the USVI the probability that at least one major hurricane will pass within 100 miles is 16%, for Anguilla (which I guess includes St.Maarten/St.Martin, St.Barths) it is 11%.

The slightly above forecast is based on two major factors, the state of El Nino/La Nina (ENSO) and sea surface temperatures (SST) in the Atlantic. Right now it looks like that the ENSO conditions during the peak of the season will be neutral or maybe slightly positive. An El Nino (positive ENSO) will normally reduce activity, a La Nina the opposite. There is also some uncertainty regarding SST in the Atlantic. Right now the far North Atlantic is cooler than normal, which is a good thing, but the western tropical Atlantic is warmer than normal. The balance of forecasted neutral or slightly positive ENSO conditions and above normal SST results in the slightly above normal forecast of hurricane activity. More technical details on the Colorado State website, or read the blog post by Brian McNoldy in the Washington Post. Regardless what the forecast is, be prepared! Now would be a good time. We for sure don't want another Irma or Maria! -Gert

Saturday, March 10, 2018 12:13PM PST - GOES imagery
GOES-16 (aka GOES-East) is a new and improved GOES satellite that became operational in December, 2017. It features more spectral bands and a higher spatial and temporal resolution. These enhanced images should improve forecasts of hurricane tracks and intensity. Nice! NOAA did changed the way they distribute the images. They now get served from the GOES-East Image Viewer. I would recommend checking out that website, the 'GeoColor' images look beautiful (see example below). Unfortunately, this resulted in many 'broken' images on my website, incl. the one above and on the Satellite Imagery page. I have updated my scripts and links, so all should be ok now. Enjoy! -Gert

- - - New GOES-East imagery, focused on N.E. Caribbean (large island is Puerto Rico) - - -

Wednesday, February 14, 2018 10:02AM PST - Possible downtime
Update Feb.17: The move has been completed. There were only minor issues. All is good!

My website will be moved to 2 new servers. They will be faster and have more memory. Hopefully we will never need this extra power though, because that means another Irma/Maria! Since the operating system will change, as well as newer versions of PHP, MySQL, etc., there might be some glitches. I will try to fix them asap, but I would not be surprised if there will be some downtime. Thanks again to my excellent web host pair Networks! They have been very supportive of stormCARIB. -Gert

... Older discussions >>

Current Tropical Weather Outlook (NHC/TPC):
Accompanying satellite image (pop-up, source: NHC)
NWS National Hurricane Center Miami FL
805 AM EDT Wed May 16 2018

For the North Atlantic...Caribbean Sea and the Gulf of Mexico:

A broad non-tropical area of low pressure located over the
northeastern Gulf of Mexico is producing widespread cloudiness,
showers, and thunderstorms across much of Florida, western Cuba and
a good portion of the Bahamas.  This system is forecast to
degenerate into a trough of low pressure, and tropical cyclone
formation is not anticipated. This is the last Special Tropical
Weather Outlook on this system, but additional information will be
included in products issued by your local weather office. Routine
Tropical Weather Outlooks will resume on June 1.
* Formation chance through 48 hours...low...near 0 percent.
* Formation chance through 5 days...low...near 0 percent.

Forecaster Avila
More detail in the Tropical Weather Discussion or view the Graphicast Image

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Latest local updates from the special
hurricane correspondents on the islands:
- Anguilla [May 18 14:19]
- St.Thomas [May 18 8:53]
- Trinidad & Tobago [May 8 16:51]
- Nevis [May 6 10:40]
- Grenada [Apr 25 11:30]
- Martinique [Apr 17 5:50]
- St.Lucia [Apr 16 21:03]
- Antigua [Apr 11 14:04]
- Dominica [Apr 2 1:06]
- Puerto Rico [Mar 5 8:25]
- St.Maarten/St.Martin [Mar 2 0:00]
- Culebra (PR) [Feb 3 5:51]
- Barbados [Feb 3 5:00]
- St.Croix [Jan 9 23:41]
- Bonaire [Jan 1 12:28]
- Vieques (PR) [Dec 12 13:05]
- Haiti [Nov 10 10:57]
- Tortola & Virgin Gorda [Nov 6 12:08]
- Cayman Islands [Oct 25 15:40]
- Relief Efforts/Where to Donate [Oct 20 14:04]
- St.John [Oct 5 16:44]
- Belize [Oct 4 8:58]
- Montserrat [Oct 1 16:29]
- Barbuda [Sep 23 23:15]
- Turks & Caicos [Sep 23 6:49]
- St.Kitts [Sep 21 22:13]
- Dominican Republic [Sep 21 17:41]
- General Update [Sep 21 9:56]
- Guadeloupe [Sep 20 9:17]
- St.Vincent & Grenadines [Sep 18 10:38]
- Bahamas [Sep 14 22:15]
- St.Barts [Sep 14 12:26]
- Curaçao [Sep 12 22:12]
- Florida Keys [Sep 10 11:20]
- Jamaica [Sep 9 8:46]
- Statia [Sep 9 4:47]
- Saba [Sep 7 1:00]
- Bermuda [Sep 2 6:30]
- Margarita Is., Venezuela [Aug 18 12:25]
- Mexico (incl. Cozumel & Cancun) [Aug 8 14:48]

Only reports received for this season are listed. See the archive for previous years.

Links to excellent websites:
- Navy/NRL Monterey
- WeatherUnderground
- NOAA/NESDIS (floater loops)
- RAMSDIS Imagery
- Radar Composite - E-Carib.
- Caribbean/Atl. buoy data
- RT model guidance (RAL/NCAR)
- STORM2K forum
- Tracking Waves (McNoldy)
- Tang/UAlbany (model tracks)
- ECMWF Model Forecast
- more...

Storm definitions by wind speed:
- Tropical Depression <39mph
- Tropical Storm 39-73mph
- Cat.1 Hurricane 74-95mph
- Cat.2 Hurricane 96-110mph
- Cat.3 Hurricane 111-129mph
- Cat.4 Hurricane 130-156mph
- Cat.5 Hurricane >=157mph
More info in the Practical Guide

Wind force relative to Category 1:
- Tropical Storm 39mph: 0.28x
- Cat.1 Hurricane 74mph: 1x
- Cat.2 Hurricane 96mph: 1.7x
- Cat.3 Hurricane 111mph: 2.3x
- Cat.4 Hurricane 130mph: 3.1x
- Cat.5 Hurricane 157mph: 4.5x
- Irma 185mph: 6.3x

- - - Local hurricane correspondents wanted! - - -

The local hurricane correspondents are the heart and soul of stormCARIB. They are the people who live on the island and write to us what is going on around them. First hand very local personal reports instead of very limited or sensationalized coverage by the general media. Do you live on one of the islands? We need your help! We are looking for more people who are interested in sending us a few paragraphs about the situation on your island before, during and after a storm hits. You don't need to be a weatherman or expert on the subject, just share with us what you know, feel and see on your island. Your help will be really appreciated by Caribbean people living abroad with family living on the islands, future visitors who have their Caribbean dream-vacation booked, etc.etc. Reliable, not-sensationalized information is just so hard to get in crisis situations. Help keep the rest of the world up-to-date with what is really happening! We really need you, Georges back in 1998, and many others since then are proof! If interested, contact

This website is all about the Caribbean. Here you can find information, weather discussions and local reports regarding tropical systems threatening the Caribbean islands. A central part of this website is the volunteer network of special local hurricane correspondents, living on the islands, who will report, when need be, on how it looks and feels like around them. Above also hopefully easy to understand weather discussions by me and Dave. In addition, as an aid in locating family or friends on the islands in an emergency situation you can post your 'plea for help' on the bulletin board. Also featured on this website is the Quick Hurricane Web Resource Navigator, for easy locating to the least overloaded webserver for National Hurricane Center advisories and the latest satellite images. Another part of the Caribbean Hurricane Network is the 'practical guide' to hurricane tracking with unit conversions, definitions, tips, links, etc. You can also find out how close the storm is and how many hours you have left to prepare plus you can map the closest point of approach of a hurricane to your location. New is the climatology of Caribbean hurricanes section. Find out when the real peak of hurricane season is for individual islands, view hurricane tracks passing by the islands over the last 150+ years. An archive with detailed reports of how the Caribbean islands fared during the 2007, 2006, 2005, 2004 (incl. Frances and Ivan), 2003, 2002, 2001, 2000, 1999 (incl. Floyd and Lenny), 1998 (incl. Georges and Mitch), 1997 and 1996 seasons are still available as well. Plus there is more, like storm-centered satellite images, make your own local satellite loop, etc. Hope you find the information on this website (now counting over thousands pages with original content) helpful. Comments always welcome! RSS web feed available. As a side note I am now accepting donations as well. Thanks for visiting!

Maintained & moderated by: Gert van Dijken (
Weather discussions also by Dave McDermott, St.Thomas, USVI.

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The information on these pages is derived from weather statements provided by the National Weather Service, the National Hurricane Center, and others, and from hurricane correspondents in the Caribbean. I tried to translate the official weather statements in more layman's terms. Also, I tried to fill the gap in reporting on what is happening in the Caribbean, instead of the US (there are already many other good website which focus on the US). Keep in mind that my statements are my own interpretations from the information available to me. Therefore, use the information at your own risk, and above all, don't use these webpages for making life-or-death decisions, always rely on the official and qualified authorities! Accuracy of eye-witness reports by the special hurricane correspondents have not been checked. They may be highly subjective. The author can not be held responsible for lost property, ruined vacations and the like. Despite all this I hope you found the webpage informative and useful. These pages do not have a commercial intent. GoBeach Vacations provided the means and opportunity to start all this. 'Unfortunately' this website has become too popular, placing too much load on the webservers. Luckily, starting in 2000, my excellent webhost provider, pairNetworks, liked my website so much that they support services whenever they can. Comments are always welcome. Just send a note to Gert