Good evening everyone. Well, we are now 20 days from the start of the 2008 Atlantic Hurricane Season. I’ve continued to read the most recent book that I received concerning Hurricanes and the Mid-Atlantic states, and despite a work schedule that has limited my time somewhat, I’ve been able to get about halfway through the work. I’m hoping to have a book review posted by the end of the month. Speaking of book reviews, I’ve yet to post the ones from last year. During last year’s hurricane season, I was quite busy looking for a new job, and working a lot of overtime. When I finally got the new job, I spent some time adjusting to it, and never really was able to get around to writing the book reviews. Moreover, there are a couple of articles that I started, but never finished from last year including one on Hurricane Humberto and another on the topic of Paleotempestology. I hope and plan to have these articles done soon.
Anyway, what I wanted to discuss with you today was the recent litany of severe weather events not only in the United States, but throughout the world, and whether or not these series of storms are an omen of things to come in terms of the upcoming hurricane season. The most notable of these recent storms was last week’s cyclone that struck the isolated and secluded nation of the Myanmar Republic, which is also known as Burma. Cyclone Nagris came into the Irrawaddy Delta region of the Southeast Asian country with winds of Category Four intensity approaching 150 miles per hour in gusts. Much of the 30,000 square mile area that this storm rolled over and flattened, was left under water with moderate to severe tidal flooding. However, there are other areas that have been affected by disaster including those in the United States such as the Great Plains and Missouri.
Last month, a rare early season typhoon moved into Canton island in China before moving into Southeastern mainland China, and Hong Kong. Typhoon Negouri left three people dead, and another 40 missing. Meanwhile, the current death toll from Cyclone Nagris in Burma has risen to 28,000 according to reports from the Associated Press. On Sunday, another round of severe weather broke out in the Great Plains with tornadoes touching down in Kansas, Missouri, and Oklahoma leaving some 20 people dead. More severe weather in the Southeast spawned twisters in Georgia and North Carolina as well.
For the state of Missouri alone, it has been a year of misery with one weather calamity after another. Rare twisters turned deadly back in January followed by devastating floods in February. More severe weather produced tornadoes in the “Show Me State” during the course of the Spring. In this latest round of chaotic weather, there were some 15 people dead in Southwestern Missouri, and either an F4 or F5 tornado touched down in Picher, Oklahoma claiming another six lives. One more was killed in Georgia. The litany of disasters attributed to weather in the United States and the rest of the world may be a harbinger of things to come as we move into the potential turbulent summer months known for producing fierce and deadly tropical storms and hurricanes. Prior to the start of the tumultuous 2005 Atlantic Hurricane Season, there were significant disasters around the world dating back to the end of 2004 with the devastating Tsunami that occurred on the day after Christmas.
Regardless of any omen that these storms may be interpreted as, residents along the coastline of the United States from Maine to Texas should begin taking the necessary precautions in preparation of this fast approaching hurricane season. Remember, despite whatever predictions have been made in regard to what could happen in Atlantic Hurricane Season 2008, it only takes one storm, and we should always prepare for that possibility.