This is National Hurricane Preparedness Week and, in true form, Mother Nature delivered Tropical Storm Andres over the weekend–the earliest system to form in the Pacific. The Pacific season officially starts May 15th. Our begins June 1st.
The National Hurricane Center has put together a terrific go-to site for all of us right here. Topics include everything from making sure your insurance is up to date, assembling a preparedness kit, assessing your risk, getting to know your neighbor.
Diving down into the Determine Your Risk category I found two graphics to share with you regarding “return periods” which try to answer the question “Are we due for a big storm?”.
Check these out below:
How Do We Stack Up?
According to the data, every 25 to 26 years, a major Category 3 or higher hurricane can be expected on our part of the Texas Coast. In 2017, Hurricane Harvey struck Rockport as a Category 4, but that storm doesn’t count as a strike here (even though we certainly felt its effects). In 2008 Hurricane Ike plowed right into our area, but technically only as a Category 2, not 3, even though the storm surge of 19-21′ was more akin to a Category 4!
You have to go back to Alicia in 1983 to find a Cat 3 strike in our area, some 38 years ago! With an average return period for major hurricanes right around 25 years, we’re clearly due. Of course, that is just one way to look at vulnerability. That same year there were only 3 hurricanes, the lowest number on record. We happened to get the strongest one.