Predictions Point to a Record-Breaking 2024 Atlantic Hurricane Season (Accuweather)

Predictions Point to a Record-Breaking 2024 Atlantic Hurricane Season

  Friday, March 29th, 2024 Source: Accuweather

The 2024 Atlantic hurricane season is setting the stage for potentially record-setting activity, with forecasters from AccuWeather predicting a significant surge in tropical systems. The season, spanning from June 1 to November 30, might kick off even earlier, indicating a bustling period ahead. Alex DaSilva, AccuWeather’s Lead Hurricane Forecaster, emphasizes the expectation of an above-average number of tropical storms, hurricanes, major hurricanes, and direct impacts on the U.S., surpassing the historical norms significantly.

Last year’s season saw 19 named storms, with only four making direct impacts on the U.S., including notable Hurricane Idalia in Florida. However, 2024 is poised to eclipse these figures, driven by factors such as unusually warm sea-surface temperatures across the Atlantic, which not only facilitate storm formation but also rapid intensification. This year’s conditions mirror those ahead of the prolific 2005 and 2020 seasons, hinting at a similar or even greater level of activity.

The swift shift from El Niño to La Niña in the Pacific Ocean further compounds the likelihood of an active hurricane season, reducing disruptive wind shear across the Atlantic and enabling more organized and potent tropical systems. Forecasters anticipate between 20-25 named storms, including 8-12 hurricanes and four to seven major hurricanes, with a 10-15% chance of exceeding 30 named storms. Areas such as the Texas coast, Florida Panhandle, South Florida, and the Carolinas face a higher-than-average risk, though all coastal residents are urged to prepare.

The possibility of exhausting the predefined list of storm names has been addressed by the World Meteorological Organization, which has prepared a supplemental list, marking a departure from the previous use of the Greek alphabet. This unprecedented level of preparedness underscores the seriousness of the forecast and the importance of early and comprehensive planning for the 2024 season.

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