NOAA predicts ‘above-normal’ hurricane season with 3 to 5 major hurricanes

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WASHINGTON (WGHP) — The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration is calling for “another above-normal” hurricane season in the Atlantic Ocean.

“Now is the time for communities along the coastline as well as inland to get prepared for the dangers that hurricanes can bring,” said Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo. “The experts at NOAA are poised to deliver life-saving early warnings and forecasts to communities, which will also help minimize the economic impacts of storms.”

On Thursday, NOAA announced that forecasters predict a 60% chance of an above-normal hurricane season, a 30% chance of a near-normal hurricane season and a 10% chance of a below-normal season.

The good news is that NOAA does not believe we’ll see the kind of historic levels of storm activity we saw in 2020.

“Although NOAA scientists don’t expect this season to be as busy as last year, it only takes one storm to devastate a community,” said Ben Friedman, acting NOAA administrator. “The forecasters at the National Hurricane Center are well-prepared with significant upgrades to our computer models, emerging observation techniques, and the expertise to deliver the life-saving forecasts that we all depend on during this, and every, hurricane season.”

Forecasters predict there will be about 13 to 20 named storms with winds as high as 39 mph or higher.

Six to 10 of those could become hurricanes with winds of 74 mph or higher.

Of those, three to five may become major hurricanes at a category of 3, 4 or 5, bringing winds of 111 mph or higher.

The administration makes these predictions with a confidence of 70%.

The Atlantic hurricane season runs from June 1 through Nov. 30.

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