Public Information Statement
Issued by NWS Boston, MA

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Public Information Statement
National Weather Service Taunton MA
446 AM EDT Thu Jun 1 2017

...Today marks the official start of the 2017 Atlantic Hurricane

Today marks the official start of the Atlantic hurricane season,
which runs from June 1st through November 30th. In an average
season, based on data from 1981 to 2010, 12 named tropical
cyclones should be expected, with 6 of these reaching hurricane
intensity, and 3 of these hurricanes becoming major hurricanes.

The official NOAA 2017 Atlantic hurricane season outlook
indicates a 45 percent probability of an above normal season, a
35 percent probability of a near normal season, and a 20 percent
probability of a below normal season. This outlook calls for
11-17 named storms, which already includes Tropical Storm Arlene,
which occurred back in April. Of these named storms, 5-9 could
reach hurricane intensity, with 2-4 of these to become major
hurricanes (category 3 or higher).

For additional details on the NOAA 2017 hurricane outlook please

The names to be used for the 2017 season will be:


Arlene       ar-LEEN           Lee          lee
Bret         bret              Maria        ma-REE-ah
Cindy        SIN-dee           Nate         nait
Don          dahn              Ophelia      o-FEEL-ya
Emily        EH-mih-lee        Philippe     fee-LEEP
Franklin     FRANK-lin         Rina         REE-nuh
Gert         gert              Sean         shawn
Harvey       HAR-vee           Tammy        TAM-ee
Irma         ER-mah            Vince        vinss
Jose         ho-ZAY            Whitney      WHIT-nee
Katia        KAH-tyah

An ongoing tropical reanalysis project continues for the
Atlantic basin. The goal is to reexamine all records using
modern understanding of tropical cyclones. This project just
recently completed its work through the 1960 season. It is
expected to be several more years before this project reaches
its end. More information about this project can be found at

This means the statistics about tropical cyclones and southern
New England will likely be changing over the next few years.

Tropical cyclones are certainly no strangers to southern New
England. Some brought just light amounts of rain and wind,
while others have brought torrential rains and flash
flooding, devastating storm surges and destructive winds.

In 2014, Hurricane Arthur passed by to our east around the
Independence Day holiday. While the strongest winds remained
offshore, much of eastern Massachusetts and portions of Rhode
Island received several inches of rain. This led to many areas
of freshwater flooding.

The most recent, wholly Tropical Storm which made a direct
hit, was Irene in 2011. Irene brought damaging winds to
portions of eastern Massachusetts and Rhode Island and
devastating rainfall and flooding to portions of Connecticut,
western Massachusetts and southwest New Hampshire into southern
Vermont. All told, Irene caused nearly 16 billion dollars in
damage as well as 49 direct deaths, 41 or which occurred in the
United States. Most of these deaths resulted from rainfall-
induced floods. Tropical cyclones are not just a risk for those
living close to the coast.

This was further emphasized by Superstorm Sandy in late October
2012. While southern New England was spared from most of Sandy`s
power, portions of the south coast still saw significant damage
due to coastal flooding. In some communities, entire dune
systems were destroyed. Not only did these dunes not protect
some properties at the time, these properties will remain more
vulnerable to future coastal flooding until they can be repaired.
This proves the point that a powerful tropical cyclone can still
be a threat, even if it is no longer a true tropical cyclone.

For southern New England, this season marks the 63rd anniversary
of one of the most destructive hurricane seasons in our history,
the Summer of 1954. The 1954 season brought New England major
Hurricane Carol, and Hurricane Edna. These powerful hurricanes
struck just 11 days apart, with Carol arriving on August 31st,
followed by Edna on September 11th. These two storms combined to
produce millions of dollars worth of damage to homes, businesses
and the boating industry, as well as claiming dozens of lives
due to storm surge and river-related flooding.

Hurricane Carol was the last major hurricane to have struck our
region. As the 2017 season begins, now is an excellent time to
begin your own preparations. Your National Weather Service would
like to suggest these helpful measures. Taking a few moments now
will save much needed time should a tropical storm or hurricane
take aim at southern New England later this season.

This year also marks the 79th anniversary of arguably the most
destructive hurricane in our history, the Hurricane of 1938.
This hurricane made landfall across central Long Island NY and
central Connecticut. This storm downed an estimated 2 billion
trees in New York and New England alone. Approximately 600
people lost their lives. Many areas within southern New England
went weeks without power. Coastal areas were especially
devastated from the tremendous storm surge. This particular
hurricane should serve as a reminder to all that although storms
of this magnitude are rare, they can still happen and must be
planned for.

To that end, here are some suggested actions you can take to
begin your preparations for the next hurricane today. By
starting now, it becomes possible to develop your plans more
completely and share them with your family. It also permits you
to spread out any purchases of supplies you may need to make
while they are more plentiful and time is not as crucial.

Coastal Residents:

 - Never plan your actions on the anticipated time of landfall.
   Typically in southern New England, heavy rains and winds to
   tropical storm force will make any travel or outdoor
   preparation work dangerous as much as 15 hours in advance of
   the eye of the storm.

 - Remember that most tropical systems approaching our region
   will accelerate dramatically. This will greatly reduce the
   time you have to prepare. Build extra time into your plan of

 - Never step outside during the passage of the eye. The often
   calm conditions will be rapidly replaced by a dramatic shift
   in wind direction and a return to stronger winds.

 - Know your evacuation routes and the proper shelters for your
   area. Check with your local town hall to see if you are in an
   evacuation zone.

 - Most shelters will not allow pets. Make arrangements ahead of
   time for a place for your pets to stay. Some animal hospitals
   offer to keep pets until you are able to return home.

 - Know where your gas and water shutoffs are. It is essential
   that you turn off both your gas and water before you leave
   your home.

 - If you choose not to head to a shelter, make arrangements now
   with relatives or friends if you wish to stay with them should
   you need to evacuate.

The Marine Community:

 - Inspect your lines at the start of the season. If you are
   anchored in a mooring field, inspect the chain between your
   pennant and the mooring. Salt water begins to corrode these
   chains after just 2 seasons in the water. But this is often
   unseen by the boat owner.

 - Boat owners should have all the necessary gear on board to
   properly tie down their vessel. You will lose precious time
   if you have to rush around searching for gear when a storm is

 - Realize that you may not be able to pull your boat out of the
   water before a storm threatens. Your only alternative will be
   to tie the vessel down.

 - Have a plan worked out with the marina operator so there are
   no questions or any confusion when the time comes to tie up or
   pull the boat out of the water.

 - Be sure to take pictures and make a written description of the
   vessel, so that this may be used after the storm passes for
   insurance purposes.

 - Ensure that your vessel is as watertight as possible.

 - When you are through, help your neighbor. It only takes one
   poorly tied boat in a marina to destroy the entire dock.

Inland Residents:

 - Be sure to have plenty of batteries on hand for flashlights,
   AM/FM radios, and your NOAA All-Hazards weather radio. More
   often than not, power will be disrupted during the storm and
   may be disrupted for several days.

 - Be sure to have canned food and other items on hand that do
   not need refrigeration. As stated above, it is almost a
   certainty that electrical and telephone systems will be
   disrupted if a hurricane strikes our region.

 - If you own a portable generator, be sure it is properly
   hooked into the power supply. If it is not properly
   installed, it may do damage to the main power supply or
   workers trying to restore power to your neighborhood.

 - Store plywood and plenty of nails so that you can quickly
   board up windows on open-facing sides of your home. Do not
   tape windows, it will not help.

 - Those living along flood-prone rivers and streams should be
   ready to head to higher ground should flooding occur.

 - In case of the unlikely event that you must evacuate, know
   where your nearest storm shelter is located, and the quickest
   route to it.

Following these simple steps will help make what can be a very
Stressful and difficult time go a bit more smoothly.


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