Region warned to expect frequent wet days and above average cyclone activity

BRIDGETOWN, Barbados (CMC) – The Barbados-based Caribbean Climate Outlook Forum (CariCOF) on Monday said that over the next three months, the transition between wet and dry season is forecast to feature frequent wet days, excessive rainfall and above-average tropical cyclone activity - exacerbated by La Niña - across the Caribbean region.

In its latest Caribbean Climate Outlooks publication CariCOF said this would result in frequent disruptions of outdoor activities and rising water levels in soils, rivers and reservoirs.

“The potential for floods and cascading hazards is forecast to be extremely high across the Lesser Antilles, high elsewhere across the Caribbean Islands and in Belize, and moderate in the coastal Guianas, where the chance of excessive rainfall increases during November,” CariCOF said.

It said in October, high humidity and temperatures at times may increase heat stress south of Guadeloupe.

CariCOF said that severe short-term drought has developed in the northwestern Bahamas, northwest Martinique and St. Barts and that as of as of September 1, severe long-term drought has developed in Antigua, Western Cuba, Guadeloupe, southwest Haiti, eastern Jamaica, Martinique, St Barts, Sint Maarten, and St Vincent.

In a brief climate outlook for the first three months of next year, CariCOF said that there are indications that climatic conditions during the first three months of 2023 may still be characteristic of a La Niña, potentially being wetter than usual in Aruba, Bonnaire and Curacao, the Guianas and the Lesser Antilles, as well as in Belize. But possibly drier than usual in the Bahamas, the Cayman Islands and Cuba.

“This results in a high potential for flooding, flash floods, and cascading hazards through early-February in the coastal Guianas. By contrast, water shortages associated with the core of the dry season may be exacerbated in the Bahamas, Cayman Islands, and Cuba,” It added.

It said during the first three months, temperatures in the Caribbean region “will be comfortably cool”.

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