About as good as Jimmy the Groundhog and Punxsutawney Phil.
So how did these things become such a big deal?
[Craig Fugate, director of emergency management for Florida] thinks part of the problem is that the media and some public officials picked up the cloudy crystal ball and ran with it. “Particularly national media has been using these forecasts inappropriately,” he says. “I’m as guilty as anyone else.”
… So why keep doing them?
The answer they give: Because they add to the overall understanding of how hurricanes work. “You actually learn more when you bust than when you verify,” says [William Gray].