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Odds Double for an Above-Normal Hurricane Season

NOAA forecasters have revised their predictions for the Atlantic hurricane season—check your force-majeure clauses.

Meeting professionals with events planned for the southeastern U.S. and the Gulf Coast this fall might have been heard uttering a collective “ug!” after the August 10 update from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Climate Prediction Center.

NOAA scientists say the odds of an above-normal Atlantic hurricane season have increased from 30 percent (NOAA’s prediction in May) to 60 percent. They are now forecasting 14 to 21 named storms this season, of which six to 11 are expected to become hurricanes. Of those hurricanes, between two and five could be major hurricanes with sustained winds of at least 111 miles per hour. The 2023 hurricane season ends November 30, and there already have been five named storms so far this year.

“The main climate factors expected to influence the 2023 Atlantic hurricane activity are the ongoing El Nino and the warm phase of the Atlantic Multi-Decadal Oscillation, including record-warm Atlantic sea-surface temperatures,” said Matthew Rosencrans, lead hurricane season forecaster with NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center. “Considering those factors, the updated outlook calls for more activity, so we urge everyone to prepare now for the continuing season.”

For meeting planners, that preparation should include a crisis-management plan that’s clear, shared widely, and practiced, plus a contract that will protect your organization if you need to cancel.

Consider these resources from MeetingsNet:

Is Your Meeting Illegal, Impossible, or Impracticable?
When and how you can call on a force majeure clause to cut your losses when the show simply can’t go on.

6 Ways to Integrate Social Media Into Your Crisis Plan
Having a social media component in your crisis communications plan will help you inform and protect your audience should something bad happen.

Sharpen Your Clause: Attrition, Cancellation, Force Majeure
Take our 20-question quiz to gauge your meeting contracts IQ.


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