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Relative Frequency of Storms in the Northern Hemisphere1

Nature volume 31, pages 293294 | Download Citation


THE portion of the northern hemisphere selected by the Signal Office of the United States for this discussion is necessarily that part for which the data required are available, and it may be considered as comprising a broad belt of from 30° to 40° of latitude in width, extending from the Pacific sea-board of America, through the United States, Canada, the Atlantic, and Europe, with the North of Africa, eastward into Western Siberia. It thus embraces some of the more important regions of the globe, including the great routes of commerce across the Atlantic. The thirteen charts, which show graphically the relative storm frequency for each month and for the year, have been constructed from data referring to 134 months in all, extending from 1863 to 1883. Of the storms which occurred in this extensive region from January 1876 to August 1881, the history of 2730 is briefly summarised. Of these 413 began and ended in America; 589 began in America and ended in the Atlantic; 190 began in America and crossed the Atlantic; 326 began and ended in the Atlantic; 655 began in the Atlantic and ended in Europe; 491 began and ended in Europe; and 66 began in America and crossed the Atlantic and Europe. The important bearing of these facts on the telegraphing from America of forecasts of storms about to strike the coasts of Europe scarcely needs to be referred to further than to remark how essential it is for the usefulness of such a service that it be placed in the hands of some competent and responsible central authority in the United States, as was suggested by us in 1879 (NATURE, vol. xx. p. 359), and which, we believe, has been carried out.

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