– The National Weather Service (NWS) today announced an alteration to its forecasting models, due to mounting evidence that the travel patterns of a National Hockey League (NHL) team can be tied to extreme weather events. All future predictions will now consider a “Canes Effect,” named after the Carolina Hurricanes franchise plagued by severe weather throughout its travels during the 2013-14 season.
“It sounds unorthodox, but it’s hard to argue against the evidence here,” said NWS spokesperson Storm McCloud. “Time after time conditions in cities across North America appeared to worsen after that team’s arrival.”
The Hurricanes this year became the first team in NHL history to have multiple road games postponed due to extreme weather. On January 7, Carolina’s game in Buffalo, NY, was postponed after a major snow and windstorm forced government officials to declare a state of emergency in Western New York. Originally thought to be caused solely by the Polar Vortex, NWS officials have determined that “Canes Effect” also had a role in that major weather event.
Just two weeks later, a severe winter storm forced the Philadelphia Flyers to cancel their January 21 contest against the Hurricanes, the Flyers’ first game cancellation in more than two decades. Beyond those two events, “Canes Effect” was also associated with an uncommon Vancouver snowstorm, powerful rainstorms and flash flooding in Southern California and extreme cold in several cities.
The Hurricanes are currently in Pittsburgh, where they are scheduled to take on the Penguins tonight at 7 p.m. (FOX Sports Carolinas, Hurricanes Radio Network). Though today’s forecast currently calls for a mix of sun and clouds in Western Pennsylvania, residents are advised to stay near shelter until the Carolina Hurricanes leave town this evening, just in case.