Colorado State University (CS) researchers have tempered their annual Atlantic hurricane forecast for this season, predicting that the lack of a significant El Niño will translate into only average activity.
The university had previously warned in April that this season could come in at “slightly above average”, with 14 named storms expected to hit between June and November.
However, in a statement today CSU researchers Philip Klotzbach and Michael Bell said the North Atlantic had “continued to anomalously cool” over the past two months, which combined with lower temperatures in the east and central tropical parts of the ocean had dampened expectations of a high activity season.
Now the pair estimate that there will be 13 named storms and 6 hurricanes, almost right on the historical median figures of 12 and 6.5 respectively.
Meanwhile the probability for at least one major hurricane, defined as category 3 and above, to make landfall hitting the entire continental US coastline at 51 percent compared to an average over the last century of 52 percent, while the probability of the East coast suffering a direct hit stood at 31 percent on an average of 30 percent.
“We anticipate a near-average probability for major hurricanes making landfall along the United States coastline and in the Caribbean,” they said.
“As is the case with all hurricane seasons, coastal residents are reminded that it only takes one hurricane making landfall to make it an active season for them. They should prepare the same for every season, regardless of how much activity is predicted.”