206 When it Comes to Hurricane Landfall, are Hurricanes Smarter than a Fifth Grader

Thursday, 19 April 2018
Champions DEFGH (Sawgrass Marriott)
H. Michael Mogil, How The Weatherworks, Naples, FL; and M. Bolton

My wife, a noted “observationalist,” noted one day that she believed that hurricanes tended to come ashore near the time of high tide. Her observation was based solely on watching TV weather reports. Since her assessment was limited and lacked a scientific basis, I undertook a study involving the timing of hurricane landfall compared to the tidal cycle. For approximately 50 U.S. tropical storm/hurricane landfalls, data showed a significantly higher likelihood that the landfall would be closer to the time of high tide (90% confidence level for a binomial test). While no causation has been found, this finding could be an important consideration in addressing storm surge warnings and landfall forecasts.
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