Mild hurricane season considered over


The National Weather Service's Climate Prediction Center in Camp Springs, Md., has said the tame 2006 hurricane season has ended early.

The Climate Prediction Center, along with other meteorologists on the Gulf and Florida coasts, said the season, considered the quietest in a decade, is over, despite officially having three weeks left to go, USA Today reported Wednesday.

"We dodged a bullet this year," said Gerry Bell, a meteorologist at the Climate Prediction Center. "If there was ever a time that we needed a break, we got one."

No major storms have been spotted by the National Weather Service since Hurricane Isaac in late September, USA Today said.

Bell said the light season could be attributed to a shift in atmospheric pressure over the Atlantic that allowed only tropical storms Alberto and Ernesto to make it onto the U.S. mainland and Tropical Storm Beryl to brush against Nantucket Island, Mass.

Scientists have also said a new "El Nino" climate pattern prevented systems in the Atlantic from forming into storms.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

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