Forecasters scale back hurricane prediction

April 7, 2009 8:04:39 AM PDT
Forecasters at Colorado State University say the chances of El Nino conditions are improving, and that means they're scaling back their hurricane forecast.In December, researchers William Gray and Phil Klotzbach predicted an above-average season for the Atlantic with 14 named storms with seven hurricanes -- three major.

Now, they're calling for an average season with 12 named storms, including six hurricanes, two of them major.

This is Gray's 26th year of forecasting hurricanes. His predictions are watched closely by emergency responders and others, but many say long-range forecasts have little practical value beyond focusing public attention on the dangers.

The hurricane season runs June 1-Nov. 30.