29 September 2015

Hurricanes and tropical storms

     I don't wish bad weather on any locality, and tropical storm Joaquin's hitting the east coast right now with predictions that the storm will become a hurricane.  Richmond, VA's in line to get a lot of the rain and wind and other places to get much worse.
    But when these things happen I'm still surprised that most people assume that Nicaragua is constantly hit by these same hurricanes and tropical storms when in fact those things hit Nicaragua far less than they hit the eastern coast of the United States. 
     Yeah, I know. That was a surprise to me too. See an early post on this same thing:  http://falsebluff.blogspot.com/2011/07/hurricanes-and-monkeys.html
     This sort of bad weather stuff always hits the Caribbean, right? Wrong, and since tracking storm activity in the Caribbean I've wondered, without doing any research, why bad storms so seldom hit Nicaragua.
     Granted, when they hit there they hit hard, like Joan in the '80s. But I think that when a new storm forms it runs into something caused by the land masses of the eastern-most Caribbean islands...and gets swept up toward the eastern U.S.
     After looking at decades of Caribbean storm patterns (most avalable on NHC/NOAA), the pattern's pretty consistent. Whether it's a tropical storm or a hurricane, most of this weather seems to start in the Atlantic and then bounce up and off the Virgin Islands, the Dominican Republic, Cuba...to smash into Florida, Louisiana, and the east coast going ever north depending on how strong it is.
      I have no idea why that's the pattern of most storms over the past decades, but for Nicaragua's sake I'm glad there's one less bad thing the country has to deal with...the place gets overlooked in a lot of ways like this little map below that doesn't even show where Nicaragua is!