If the current prediction hold true for this year’s Atlantic hurricane season we may end up seeing below normal activity with the formation of tropical storms and hurricanes. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration is calling for a near normal to below normal season. The other major forecasting agency at Colorado State University is also predicting a relatively quiet season this year. That would certainly follow the trend from last season which was very quiet. In fact it was the first Atlantic hurricane season in 19 years to feature no major hurricanes.
The season runs from June 1 to November 30 and the 2 main reasons that are guiding the predictions this year are cooler than normal ocean water temperatures in the Atlantic and the likelihood of a having El Nino continue to develop in the tropical Pacific Ocean. The latter would favor having more wind shear which can inhibit hurricane formation while the cooler waters can suppress the strengthening of storms. Here’s the breakdown of the number and the kinds of storms that are predicted to form:
Of course this does not mean we can let our guard down along the U.S. coastline. Keep this in mind: Both major forecasting agencies had predicted a very active season last year which of course turned out to be way off the mark. However that’s not always the case. In most years their predictions are quite accurate. I hope they’re right this time and that the storms that do form prefer to remain far out at sea and away from land.