First hurricane of the season forms in the eastern Pacific.

June 20, 2010

Just over 24 hours after her formation, Tropical Storm Celia continued to intensify and became the first hurricane of the 2010 season.

It is, of course, normal for the Eastern Pacific basin to have a hurricane before the Atlantic. However, it is rare for there to be one in the east Pacific before the west. The last such occurrence was in 2001 when Hurricane Adolph formed on May 27 , a few weeks before  the formation of Typhoon Chebi.  This lack of activity in the western Pacific is reflected in year to date Northern Hemisphere Accumulated Cyclone Energy being half  its normal value.

Celia’s intensification has been fairly well forecast by the National Hurricane Center. NHC’s forecasts for intensification have been ahead of the intensity forecasts offered by the GFDL and HWRF models, which had been keeping the storm under hurricane strength. Forecasts as early as last night by NHC predicted Celia becoming a major hurricane, again in excess of available model guidance. To this point, the aggressive forecasting has been vindicated. The current forecast brings Celia to a major hurricane in two days. It does not pose a threat to land.


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