Hurricane researchers around the country are expecting 1999 to be an unusually active hurricane season. Though still early in the mid-August through October season, the North Atlantic has already seen two tropical storms (Arlene and Emily) and three hurricanes (Bret, Cindy, and Dennis). While Hurricane Bret struck land in a rural portion of South Texas, and Dennis flirted with the coasts of North and South Carolina, there is reason to think the worst is yet to come. Many of the atmospheric and oceanic factors that are considered conducive signs for hurricane activity have been in place since earlier this year and most likely will persist through the season. Dr. William Gray, professor of Atmospheric Science at Colorado State University, has predicted a busy year with 14 named storms and 9 hurricanes (defined by wind speeds equal to or greater than 74 miles per hour), four of which he predicts will sustain winds of 111 mph or more. This week's In The News focuses on the 1999 storms that have been consistently threatening US coasts since the middle of August and the educated predictions that this year might be especially severe. Provided are ten sites containing hurricane data, research, news, and up-to-date images.
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