WASHINGTON - Federal forecasters say there is a 70 percent chance that this year’s Atlantic hurricane season will be busier than normal.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration expects between six and nine hurricanes this year. The forecast calls for three to five of those hurricanes to be major, with winds greater than 110 mph.
Hurricane season starts in June and runs until the end of November. So far, there have been four named storms. The updated forecast calls for 13 to 19 named storms this year. A normal year has 12 named storms, six hurricanes and three major storms.
“Our confidence for an above-normal season is still high because the predicted atmospheric and oceanic conditions that are favorable for storm development have materialized,” said Gerry Bell, Ph.D., lead seasonal hurricane forecaster at NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center.