You’d be forgiven for thinking that the Atlantic tropical storm and hurricane season is looking like a benign one this year. So far we’ve had three named storms, one of which reached hurricane strength. We’re now two months into the season and the tropics aren’t yet looking particularly active.
The Colorado State University Tropical Meteorological Project would advise you to keep your eyes in the tropics if you have any reason to fear hurricane losses (which many of our visitors do). They’ve just published their latest tropical storm forecast update and are saying that we can still expect the severe season they predicted a few months ago.
They still call for 18 named storms in the Atlantic basin, with 10 of them reaching hurricane strength and five of those hurricanes becoming major with wind speeds in excess of 111mph. They say that the combined effects of an unusually warm Atlantic ocean and the development of La Niña conditions make the likelihood of a severe storm season very high.
They’re landfall probabilities tell a similar story. They put the chances of a major (category 3, 4 or 5) hurricane making landfall on the U.S. coast at 75% (historical average is 52%). The chances of a major storm hitting the U.S. east coast (including Florida) is said to be 50% (historical average 31%). The chances of a major storm hitting the Gulf coast is said to be 49% (historical average 30%). The chances of a major storm tracking into the Caribbean is said to be 64%.
So it’s far to early to assume that this will be a less severe season than originally predicted. Even more reason for you to check out and keep coming back to Artemis’ tropical storm tracking page.
Download the forecast in PDF format here.