NOAA predicts a near-normal hurricane season
The season officially begins on June 1st
NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - Atmospheric conditions this year have led to a near-normal 2023 hurricane season forecast. That’s according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).
This early season prediction calls for 12-17 named storms (winds of 39 mph and greater), with 5-9 hurricanes (winds of 74 mph and greater). Of those hurricanes, 1-4 could become major (category 3 and higher with winds of 111 mph and higher).
Driving atmospheric factors in this hurricane season will be the development of El Nino and very warm sea surface temperatures. Typically, El Nino can suppress hurricane development with increased wind shear. A competing factor will be the warmer than normal water which typically helps development. Taking these factors into consideration, NOAA says we have a 40% chance of a near-normal season and a 30% chance for above or below normal activity.
NOAA is also touting new developments to their hurricane modeling this year. They will now have a new hurricane model out of the experimental phase and in use called the Hurricane Analysis and Forecast System (HAFS). It will improve the track and intensity by up to 15%.
The May 2023 Atlantic Hurricane Season Outlook is one of two outlooks for the year. The second will come in August as an update. It’s produced by hurricane experts from the National Hurricane Center in collaboration with the Hurricane Research Division and the Weather Prediction Center all of which are under NOAA.
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