We are slowly inching closer to warmer weather and this often means tropical moisture… leading to hurricanes or tropical storms.

Every year there’s a projection or a forecast that comes out for the upcoming hurricane season, which runs from June 1st thru November 30th, to forecast the number of tropical systems that may develop in the Atlantic.

The research is performed by Colorado State University and they are predicting the numbers to be slight below average for 2019.

The research team is anticipating 13 named storms for the Atlantic.

To break it down further… 5 will become hurricanes and 2 two of those will become a major hurricane. A major hurricane is a category 3 or more.

This means that 8 named storms will never reach hurricane status.

The main factor for the decrease in storms this year? The projected/developing El Nino.

An El Nino brings up warm water along the Pacific Ocean, around the equator, but in the Atlantic this often translates to colder water. And cooler water is not good for hurricane development.

Current ENSO Temp Anomalies
Courtesy: NOAA

El Nino also brings in wind shear. Wind shear is different winds and different speeds and directions and for a hurricane to develop a uniform wind is often necessary… otherwise a hurricane will fall apart.

So far experts are saying that the Atlantic is very comparable to the years of 1969, 1987, 1991, 2002, and 2009. With the exception of 1969, all years showed below levels is tropical development. That is according to Phil Klotzback, a research scientist in the report. A big reason as to why researchers are projection a slightly less than normal year.

The research suggests that this 2019 hurricane season will be about 75% of average (based on the 1982-2019 time period). When you compare this to last year we saw a 120% increase.

This report also included landfall predictions — this must be taken with a grain of salt. This doesn’t give the exact landfall areas, just the general idea of where a landfall may occur. Just to put a quick summary, the research suggests that there is a 48% chance of a major hurricane making landfall somewhere along the U.S.

This can not be stressed enough that this is only a prediction. It does not mean a landfall will occur — or if any storms even develop.

As the hurricane season gets underway new forecasts will be issued. According to the report, the dates will follow as June 4, July 2, and August 6. Changes may be necessary because new data will be released and this will further develop the forecast… especially if an El Nino continues to form

This is the 36th year that this study has come out.

Once again, when reading this research it is very important to note that the projection is only for guidance… it isn’t an exact measure.

To see the full report click here: https://tropical.colostate.edu/media/sites/111/2019/04/2019-04.pdf