“This predicted activity suggests that the season could be more active than we’ve seen during the last three years”, said Dr. Gerry Bell, a hurricane forecaster with NOAA, in a video released by NOAA.
Storms forming before hurricane season officially begins is not uncommon; in fact, just past year, Tropical Storm Ana formed on May 9 to kick off the 2015 season.
As explained by the Washington Post, a near-normal season is most likely if, “La Niña develops and the conditions associated with a low-activity era and cool AMO also develop”. A rare January Hurricane (Hurricane Alex) and Tropical Storm Bonnie which just recently made landfall in SC this past Saturday (May 28).
The last time a major Category 3 storm or larger made landfall on the USA mainland was Hurricane Wilma in 2005. The storm formed quickly near the Bahamas and moved across coastal Georgia and SC over the weekend, with up to 10.5 inches of rain and widespread flooding along roads and in some homes. He and Garten pointed out that despite widespread debris and extended power outages, the area never received sustained hurricane force winds during Charley, Frances or Jeanne in 2004. “You can train to be ready for them, you can prepare for the aftermath of them, but when they hit, that is in God’s hands”, Buckhorn said. Meaning, although Hurricane season begins on June 1st, the first storm to be named within the confines of hurricane season will begin with the letter C. However, formulating reliable predictions for this upcoming season has been especially hard, the American scientific agency said, as there is a lot of uncertainty in the climate signals that influence the formation of Atlantic storms. The bulk of named storms form between August and October, with September the clear peak month at 34%!
The National Hurricane Center is expecting 10-16 named storms with four to eight being hurricanes and one to four being major hurricanes. “It’s just an opportunity to check and say am I ready?”
The Atlantic hurricane season officially begins June 1st.
There are six lists that rotate every year, however, a name is retired if the storm is a category three or higher and causes significant damage, financial and personal loss. And one to four of those may be major hurricanes, which are defined as Category 3, 4, or 5 hurricanes that have winds over 110 miles per hour.
It’s been 11 years since a hurricane has made landfall.