Last year it was Super-storm Sandy and this year we have recently had devastating weather that has hit Oklahoma in the form of one of the most devastating tornado reports on record. Now the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is projecting and forecasting that the 2013 Atlantic hurricane season is going to be active or extremely active. That is not good news for those of us who live within 50 to 150 miles of the coast in the Gulf of Mexico or along the Eastern Seaboard.
NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center starts on June 1 and the center is forecasting a 70% chance of there being 13 to 20 named storms in the six-month period of hurricane season. Named storms carry winds of 39 MPH or high. The group sees the following: 7 to 11 storms could become hurricanes with winds of 74 mph or higher. This would be broken down as 3 to 6 major hurricanes ranging in the Category 3, 4 or 5, which implies winds of 111 MPH or higher.
NOAA is saying that these ranges are well above the seasonal average of 12 named storms, 6 hurricanes and 3 major hurricanes. The reasons are atmospheric climate pattern including a strong African monsoon, above-normal water temperatures in the Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico, and no protection from El Niño.
Be advised that NOAA’s hurricane outlook does not forecast how many hurricanes and tropical storms will actually make landfall. Many hurricanes and tropical storms form early and deviate north into the Atlantic Ocean and never really hit any land masses.