Let's start with the breaking weather news...Danny! It looks like those along the east coast need to keep an eye to the sky over the next few days, especially from the Outer Banks to Cape Cod.
Danny is forecasted to become either a strong tropical storm, or a weak hurricane over the next 2 days.
The storm will brush by the Outer Banks of North Carolina and the mid-Atlantic, then make a close sweep past Long Island and Cape Cod this coming weekend. A landfall is even possible somewhere in New England during the day on Saturday.
The good news is Danny will be a storm on the move and won't linger. The bad news is the weather will be stormy Thursday through early Sunday along the east coast.
Stay tuned to your local media for the latest if you live in the areas mentioned above.
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And someone left a comment on the blog asking how accurate weather models are for predicting hurricanes/tropical storms?
There are several different forecast models out there, and the output can vary due to a couple of reasons.
1. Models are just complex mathematical equations basically, and each model is written with a different set of start parameters -- so the outcomes will vary. Some may focus on track, some may focus on strength.
2. Models are only as good as the data that feeds it.
Because there are so many different models with different outputs, forecasters often use an ensembal -- which shows all the possible outputs from all the chosen models on one display.
If 10 out of 12 models agree, that is likely going to be the consensus used at the time -- but things change -- so that is why many models run more than once a day. Some run every 6 hours, some can even run every hour as new data feeds into it.
Click here to learn more about tropical cyclone prediction models.
So I guess the answer is they are pretty darn accurate, but things can change from run to run depending on the amount of data and the quality of the data feeding the model.
There aren't many, if any, land-based methods to collect data in the oceans. There are some floating bouys but mostly within a few hundred miles of the coast. In some cases there are islands with weather equipment.
But for the most part, data collected in the open ocean is mostly all from satellites or passing ships.
So the quality and quantity can vary from hour to hour depending on a number of variables.
This is why it is important to stay tuned for each update to see if there are any significant changes or developments with the forecast.