National Hurricane Center calls for a ‘near average’ Atlantic hurricane season

Published: May. 25, 2023 at 5:22 PM EDT
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ATLANTA, Ga. (Atlanta News First) - Following several very active hurricane seasons, the National Hurricane Center is forecasting a ‘near-average’ hurricane season this year.

Between 12 and 17 named storms are forecast to develop, of which five to nine are forecast to become hurricanes. One to four major hurricanes are expected to develop within the basin; the Gulf of Mexico, the Caribbean, and/or the open Atlantic Ocean.

Two main factors led to the pre-season forecast.

The rapid development of El Nino conditions in the northeast Pacific should provide hostile conditions for tropical development across parts of the Atlantic Basin.

However, water temperatures remain warmer than average across a large portion of the Atlantic Basin. Large pools of warmer water tend to favor more tropical activity.

The Atlantic Basin has also been in a decades-long active period that goes beyond season-to-season variations. The active periods tend to be cyclical. The ongoing period began in the mid-1990s, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association.

While it appears that the recent stretch of very active to hyperactive seasons will come to an end, there is still uncertainty about exactly how the upcoming hurricane season plays out.

Regardless of the season as a whole, it only takes one destructive hurricane impacting a vulnerable area to make it a memorable season. Keep an eye on the forecast in the First Alert Weather App and have a general plan ready to go if severe weather impacts our portion of the southeast and Metro Atlanta.