NOAA prepares for the start of the hurricane season

No big weather surprises are expected this year. We may hear something from the Climate Prediction Center about an unusually active hurricane season, but so far, it has just been a one-in-50-year cold period.

Still, each year, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration releases a formal forecast, along with a host of indicators that it considers important. These include precipitation, sea surface temperatures, and land and water temperatures. In its update of the Atlantic hurricane season forecast from September 9, we ran down the details of its outlook:

The seasonal outlook essentially predicts the same hurricane season as 2016: An average to slightly above-average season. Although some storm activity is expected, this might not make landfall, and not all of the hurricane seasons above-average are very active. NOAA does not expect a “monster storm” this year. On the other hand, there is a greater than 50 percent chance that one hurricane of Category 3 or higher will make landfall in the U.S. The highest chance is in the second half of the season. Sustained moisture from a very active La Niña is likely to increase tropical activity. However, this likely will not be enough to more than offset the decrease in precipitation from El Niño in the eastern Pacific. The past 10 years have all been below-average in terms of the number of hurricanes and it looks like 2019 is no different, with less than a 50 percent chance of above-average activity. Nevertheless, this is considered a “typical” seasonal season, with average hurricane activity. Two more years of above-average hurricanes also pose an overall chance of less than 1 percent. And two years of below-average activity (like 2016) would equal the record from 1888. There is no chance of a tropical depression or tropical storm making landfall in California.

See the update here.

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