The hurricane season in the Atlantic begins Thursday and runs through until the end of November.
Here is what you need to know about the possible coming storms.
What kind of hurricane season expected?
An above-normal season, it is possible, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association (NOAA).
There is an estimated “45 percent chance of an above normal season, a 35 percent chance of a near normal season, and only a 20 percent chance of a below-normal season,” its website says.
How many storms are predicted?
“The Atlantic hurricane of the season will likely produce a range of 11-17, tropical storms, of which 5-9 it is expected that hurricanes,” Dr. Gerry Bell, a lead seasonal hurricane forecaster with NOAA, said in a video. “Two to four of them are expected to become major hurricanes of category three or higher.”
Hurricanes have winds reaching 74mph or more, while the major hurricanes have wind hitting 111mph or more, NOAA explained online.
“An average season produces 12 named storms of which six become hurricanes, including three major hurricanes,” NOAA said.
What kind of El Niño is predicted?
“A weak or non-existent El Niño” is expected, says Bell.
El Niño is the warming of the ocean, or above the average seawater temperature (SST) in the central and eastern tropical Pacific Ocean,” according to NOAA climate.gov.
Atlantic hurricane activity is usually reduced by the effects of El Niño, the Associated Press reported.
What are the 2017 Atlantic tropical cyclone names?
Arlene, Bret, Cindy, Don, Emily, Franklin, Gert, Harvey, Irma, Jose, Katia, Lee, Maria, Nate, Ophelia, Philippe, Rina, Sean, Tammy, Vince, and Whitney. Arlene was used for a tropical storm this spring.
What should you do to prepare for a storm?
On the NOAA’s website, Acting Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Administrator Robert J. Fenton, Jr. advised various measures.
“Having a family discussion about what you will do, where you’re going and how you communicate with each other when a storm threatens, do you Know the evacuation route; tune into your local news or download the FEMA app to get alerts, and ultimately, listening to the local government if a storm is approaching,” he said.