It’s been almost one year since 2017’s devastating hurricane season, and while some parts of the country are still rebuilding, meteorologists are already giving warning of the upcoming 2018 hurricane season. This forewarning is certainly causing stress and concern in many countries and states that are in and near the Caribbean, the Gulf Coast, and Southeast–especially since many are still recovering from the damages made from hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria. There are even parts of Puerto Rico that are still without power.
The mental, physical, and financial toll that the 2017 hurricanes took was tremendous, and the 2018 hurricane season is predicted to be even more active than the last.
Although hurricane season doesn’t technically start until June 1st and lasts through November 30th, meteorologists are concerned that the first named storm might arrive this month.
An Active Hurricane Season to Commence Early?
This 2018 hurricane season might be starting earlier than expected. Just last Sunday, the National Hurricane Center issued an outlook about a low-pressure system that was forming (source). Officials at the National Hurricane Center believe that this low pressure system could develop tropical or subtropical characteristics as it moves closer to the Gulf of Mexico. So far, meteorologists claim there’s a 40% chance of the low-pressure system forming into a subtropical or tropical depression within the next 5 days. However, areas such as Florida, Georgia, and South Carolina are looking at heavy rains in their coastal towns. After a long hurricane season in 2017, these predictions are providing little relief to those who are still recovering from the previous hurricanes.
Additionally, if this low-pressure system does, in fact, turn into a named storm, forecasters will be calling it ‘Alberto’.
Currently, forecasts from North Carolina State University and Colorado State University predict that there will be approximately 14 to 18 named storms to develop on the eastern seaboard this year. Of those approximations, Colorado State believes that 7 of them will form into hurricanes, while North Carolina State believes that 7 to 11 of them will be hurricanes. The Weather Channel, on the other hand, predicts that there will 13 named storms with 6 hurricanes. Of the 6 predicted hurricanes, The Weather Channel believes that two of them will be major hurricanes. Although these predictions range differently from one another, they are still above the average. For example, from 1950 to 2017, the average amount of named storms has been around 11. However, if these predictions remain accurate, the 2018 hurricane season would be slightly less active than 2017 with it’s 17 named storms, 10 hurricanes, and 6 major hurricanes.
Despite these predictions, only time will tell how active of a hurricane season 2018 will be. What we do know is that this hurricane season is to start earlier than expected. After $180 billion in damages from Hurricane Harvey, Texas natives, as well as the residents near the Gulf of Mexico, Caribbean, and eastern seaboard, are hoping for a hurricane season that’s significantly less detrimental than the last.