Based on the August analysis by the Tropical Meteorology Project at Colorado State University, NOAA today has increased its forecast for the number of hurricanes to six from its June forecast of five – but this still translates into a forecast for a slightly-lower-than-average year. Based on the expectation of a weak El Nino event, NOAA expects:
- 12 to 17 named storms (top winds of 39 mph or higher), including:
- 5 to 8 hurricanes (top winds of 74 mph or higher), of which:
- 2 to 3 could be major hurricanes (Category 3, 4 or 5; winds of at least 111 mph)
Although the probability of an above-average year is now 35 percent, the expectation is for a just-below-average level of activity for this hurricane season (June 1 to November 30).
While the forecasted number of hurricanes is increased, some news outlets missed the good news that this is still a forecast for a slightly below-average year.