Like star athletes whose season was cancelled, Jim Cantore and his fellow hurricane stuntmen have surely had a discouraging summer and fall. While global warming is expected to increase the strength and frequency of tropical storms and the annual shot-in-the-dark forecast from Colorado State predicted a fair amount of activity, the Atlantic hurricane season, with just a few weeks to go, has proved to be a dud.
Stripped of their opportunity to report amidst pounding surf and windblown rain, the Weather Channel crew was forced to settle for inland floods and tornado chasing; Jim visited sites of past glory and, in late summer, had the chance to report from a rowboat, gliding above submerged vehicles.
Almost all of this season's hurricane activity was in the Pacific, with several storms threatening the Baja and a series of massive typhoons creating havoc in Southeast Asia. Predicting the pattern and frequency of tropical cyclones is, obviously, still an inexact science. It will be a long winter for Jim and his team, waiting for the 2010 hurricane season to begin in June. As they say in sports, better luck next year!