NOAA Is Now Calling For a Below Average 2018 Hurricane Season

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has released their updated Atlantic Basin hurricane outlook for 2018, and it is generally good news. A number of factors lead NOAA hurricane scientists to conclude that there is a 60 percent chance of a below normal hurricane season. Those factors include the coolest sea surface temperatures in the deep tropical Atlantic since the early 1990s. Another factor is an emerging El Nino pattern, which increases vertical wind shear that impedes hurricane development. A third factor is a fair dry and stable atmosphere that has persisted over the tropical Atlantic. In short, NOAA predicts 9 to 13 named storms (four already have occurred), 4 to 7 hurricanes, and 0 to 2 major hurricanes. In a normal season, we typically see twelve named storms, six hurricanes, and three major hurricanes.

The last time the tropical Atlantic experienced an El Nino was in 2015. The 2015 Atlantic Hurricane season featured eleven named storms, four hurricanes, and two major hurricanes. During the 2015 season, Tropical Storm Bill developed just off the Middle Texas Coast and then made landfall near Matagorda Island on June 16th. Tropical Storm Bill produced heavy rain in the Crossroads.

Remember, however, it only takes one to make it a big year. For more information regarding hurricane season, click the weather tab and go to the hurricane tracker section for more information.